2004 News Archive

31 December 2004: New Tajikistan Tax Code Provides Additional Benefits for Civil Society
The Tajikistan Government adopted a new Tax Code at the end of December which will provide increased benefits for NGOs. In particular, article 148 increases the amount of deductions businesses and individuals can take for their charitable contributions to NGOs from 2 % to 5 %.

15 December 2004: ICNL Co-Organizes Comparative Seminar on International Charity Law in China
In October 2004, the China Charity Federation organized a comparative seminar on international charity law. Co-organizers included ICNL, the Brigham Young University Law School, General Motors Corporation China, and LDS Charities.

13 December 2004: Charitable Deductions Increased in Kazakhstan
On December 13, 2004 the law amending the tax legislation of Kazakhstan was signed and on January 1, 2005 it came into full force and effect. This law increased the amount of deductions businesses can take for their charitable contributions to NGOs from 2 % to 3 %.

29 November 2004: ICNL Launches New Website and Online Library
Dear Colleagues & Friends: The International Center for Not-For-Profit Law is proud to announce the launch of its new and improved website. The new website offers users a centralized and expanded resource on civil society legal issues across the globe.

26 November 2004: NGO Charter Adopted in Croatia
On November 26, 2004, the City Council of Rijeka adopted an NGO Charter, a document regulating cooperation between the City and local NGOs. The NGO Charter is the first of its kind to be adopted by a municipal government in Croatia.

24 November 2004: ICNL Releases Articles Discussing Public Councils in the NIS
The concept of public councils as a mechanism for government consultation with the public has become very popular in the former Soviet Republics. These public councils can be an effective mechanism for citizens to participate in governments’ decision making process.

25 October 2004: Draft Code Impacting NGOs to be Submitted to Croatian Parliament
The Draft Code of Good Practices in Distribution of Public Funding to NGOs (Code) is expected to be introduced to Parliament soon in Croatia. The Code outlines basic procedural rules and substantive criteria for public funding of NGOs.

18 October 2004: New Website Launched on UN-Civil Society Relations
The United Nations Non-Governmental Liaison Service (NGLS) is launching a new section of its website that will provide up-to-date information on UN reform with a special focus on UN – Civil Society Relations.

13 October 2004: Law Reform Reports on Turkey Released
ICNL provides assistance in the development of TUSEV's Comparative Reports as part of its NGO Law Reform Project.

29 September 2004: UN-Civil Society Relations Report Released
In June the Panel of Eminent Persons on UN-Civil Society Relations published its long-awaited report to the Secretary General. In September, the Secretary General published his response.

13 August 2004: ICNL Comments on Proposed Russian Tax Code Amendments
In July 2004, the Government of the Russian Federation submitted to the State Duma proposed amendments to the Tax Code. Amendments to subsections 5 and 6 of Article 251, if enacted into law, would directly impact on Russian non-commercial organizations (NCOs).

13 August 2004: Georgian Business Ethics Working Group Presents Conference
The Georgian Business Ethics Working Group, in cooperation with the American Chamber of Commerce, MARNET, and the U.S. Department of Commerce presents conference.

17 July 2004: Turkish Parliament Adopts New Law on Associations
On July 17 the Parliament of Turkey accepted the most progressive Law on Associations in over 20 years. The acceptance of this Law marks an important milestone for the strengthening of the legal framework for NGOs and for the general advancement of civil society in Turkey.

15 July 2004: Malta NGO Law Working Group Update
On Thursday, 15 July, the NGO Law Working Group met Minister Dolores Cristina who is responsible for NGO legislation in Malta. The position of the Working Group has already been made public, namely through the Memorandum it has drawn up, so this short report will focus on the Minister's comments. Mr. Jesmond Schembri, PA to the Minister, also took part in the meeting.

4 July 2004: ICNL Appoints Douglas Rutzen, President Elect
The International Center for Not-for-Profit Law (ICNL) is pleased to announce that, at ICNL’s Annual Meeting on June 10-11, 2004, the Board of Directors re-appointed Stephan Klingelhofer President, appointed Douglas Rutzen President-Elect, and elected John Clark, Hestern Banda, Bindu Sharma, and Gavin Andersson as Board Members.

30 June 2004: Another Strike of Belarusian Government Against Civil Society
On 30 June the Belarusian Chamber of Representatives approved amendments to the law on nongovernmental organizations (NGOs).

24 June 2004: ICNL Announces New Director for Central Asia
The International Center for Not-for-Profit Law is pleased to announce that Stephen Larrabee has been hired to serve as our new Regional Director for our Central Asia project.

3 March 2004: Angola to Enforce More Stringent Laws Affecting NGOs
The government of Angola will soon begin enforcing more stringent regulations affecting nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), according to the United Nations' Integrated Regional Information Network.

17 February 2004: European Court Decisions
The European Court of Human Rights issued two decision relating to Article 11 (freedom of associations).

4 February 2004: Civil Society Under Increasing Pressure in Belarus
In 2003, alone, Belarusian authorities closed down 51 non-governmental, not-for-profit organizations (NGOs).

15 January 2004: ICNL Hires New Legal Counsel for NIS
The International Center for Not-For-Profit Law is pleased to announce that Melanie Lyon has been hired to serve as our new Legal Counsel for NIS Projects.

11 January 2004: Do Tax Incentives Make a Difference?
It is often said that philanthropy barely exists in Australia; that unlike in the US (with which the comparison is usually made), there is no real philanthropic culture.

9 January 2004: The Philippines: Self-Regulation on Trial
The Philippine Council for NGO Certification (PCNC) provides the world's first example of government delegating to a non-profit organization authority to certify NGOs for tax benefit purposes.