EU helps establish legal framework for social entrepreneurs in Ukraine


The EU4Youth project for unlocking the potential of young social entrepreneurs in Moldova and Ukraine (EUnlocking project) has recently launched its legal component, partnering with several relevant initiatives led by the Ukrainian Parliament, local government and civil society.

Until now, the term “social entrepreneurship” is still not incorporated into the national legislation of Ukraine. In 2013 and 2015, parliamentary opposition blocked previous attempts to adopt a law on social entrepreneurship in Ukraine due to their vague definition of social entrepreneurship, lack of consultations with entrepreneurial communities, and negative prospects of their regulatory influences.

The Ukrainian legal system currently suggests many provisions for social enterprises, from exemptions of payments to pension funds to financial support for local development initiatives. The practices vary from region to region, and social businesses often experience challenges in registration and getting their special status.

The EUnlocking project drives efforts to support the harmonisation of these practices, as well as provide equal access to state-guaranteed benefits to social entrepreneurs in Ukraine. Starting from 1 April 2020 until now, the component has organised 7 virtual workshops on legal changes to the discussions on the draft bill “On social entrepreneurship” and other related legislation in close consultation with the target groups. T

he EUnlocking project will provide alternative legal suggestions and public hearings throughout the country to help ensure that, (1) the law-makers can hear and count on the voices of social businesses as well as other relevant stakeholders who want to contribute to better legislation, and (2) the bill on social enterprise 2020 and other legislation are established with a participatory approach and will be widely welcomed when they are approved. The new draft bills on social entrepreneurship are expected to address criticism from the relevant practitioners and resolve a large field of misinterpretations.

The EUnlocking project helps to foster the social entrepreneurial potential of young people in Moldova and Ukraine by establishing a favourable ecosystem for social enterprises as well as by inspiring and supporting more young social entrepreneurs to develop and sustain their innovative solutions to the promotion of social inclusion and environmental sustainability across both countries. The project is funded by the European Union under its EU4Youth Programme.

Find out more EU4Youth – unlocking the potential of young social entrepreneurs in Moldova and Ukraine (EUnlocking)