Statement by EPF on the amendments made to the procedures for international donors to obtain the right to make grants in Azerbaijan

The Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Azerbaijan, with Decision No. 12, dated 24 January 2017, has made amendments to “The Procedures for International Donors to Obtain the Right to Make Grants in Azerbaijan”. The Eurasia Partnership Foundation (EPF) believes that the amendments have eased the procedures for international donors to obtain the right to make grants and that this will create new funding opportunities for local NGOs.

The new opportunities brought by these amendments allow local recipients themselves to apply for the required socio-economic review. These local recipients can also now apply simultaneously to the Ministry of Justice for both registration and for the socio-economic review. EPF notes that together, these changes have the potential to create more opportunities for local NGOs to receive financial support from international donors. Besides this, some other procedural issues have been simplified. Firstly, the documents that should be submitted with the application for a socio-economic review no longer need to be approved by a notary. Secondly, while previously the time period for processing the socio-economic review was 15 days, it has now been reduced to 7 days. In addition, the previous procedures required that if there was a need to pursue further investigations for the socio-economic review, it could be prolonged for a further 15 days, however this has now also been reduced to a maximum of 7 days.

EPF hopes that these positive amendments to the relevant legislative acts will continue in the upcoming months and that these type of actions will reduce the bureaucratic barriers for international donors to obtain the right to make grants. EPF highly values the actions taken by the government of the Republic of Azerbaijan in recent months and believes that these actions will contribute to the strengthening of civil society and the future development of the country.

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