Asia and the Pacific Program
ICNL works in more than 10 countries in Asia and the Pacific. We seek to empower local partners by providing comparative information, international legal expertise, and technical assistance on the legal framework for civil society. We seek to enhance the law reform capacity of local partners through research fellowships and other initiatives.
In Afghanistan, ICNL has provided technical assistance in drafting the Law on Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), which was enacted in 2005, and in drafting the Law on Associations, enacted in 2013. ICNL continues to empower local partners who are leading efforts to prepare new laws on foundations and volunteerism and amendments to the tax code, which would provide donor incentives in Afghanistan for the first time. In addition, ICNL improves the implementation of law through the training of government regulators and educates civil society representatives on their rights and obligations under the legal framework. ICNL’s work has helped amplify the voice of civil society in policymaking in Afghanistan.
In Bangladesh, ICNL conducted an assessment of the legal framework for civil society in 2012. Noting the challenges relating to restrictions on funding of civil society organizations, ICNL convened a regional workshop in July 2013 for local partners from seven countries in South Asia, including Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. In addition, ICNL has provided periodic assistance to local partners in relation to the draft Foreign Donations (Regulation) Act.
In Cambodia, ICNL provided support to local and international partners on the legal framework for associations and NGOs, through written analyses and comparative information. Currently, ICNL is working with local partners to establish a monitoring framework for the 2015 Law on Associations and NGOs; to provide assistance on the draft Trade Union Law; and to raise awareness of international norms relating to cybercrime laws and the freedom of expression. Read ICNL's analysis of the draft Trade Union Law here: English Khmer
In China, ICNL has provided technical assistance on the legal framework for nonprofits, foundations, and charities; served as a resource to Chinese agencies, academic institutions and foreign donors on key issues of philanthropic and nonprofit law and policy; supported research on China's complex and changing legal and policy framework for the nonprofit and philanthropic sector; and assisted on the policy framework for disaster response, among other issues.
In Indonesia, ICNL is supporting research relating to the impact of recent Constitutional Court decisions relating to the 2013 Law on Societal Organizations on the exercise of the freedoms of association and expression.
In Laos, ICNL provided technical assistance in the preparation of the Decree on Associations, which established, for the first time, a legal basis for the existence of registered associations in the country.
In Myanmar, (photo on right), ICNL provided assistance to local civil society partners and parliamentarians in improving the draft Association Registration Law, which was enacted in 2014. Currently, ICNL is working with local partners to support the professional implementation of the newly enacted Law.
In Mongolia, ICNL affiliate the European Center for Not-for-Profit Law (ECNL) is providing assistance to civil society leaders and the government as they work together on a comprehensive package of reforms affecting the legislation on NGOs, public benefit status, and contracting out government tasks to non-state actors.
In Nepal, ICNL provided support to local partners to hold a series of consultation meetings with civil society groups on the freedom of association and legal reform priorities.
In Pakistan, ICNL provided support to local partners to respond to various legal threats that have arisen in recent months. ICNL’s small grant support has enabled local partners to convene consultation meetings with civil society groups, parliamentarians and government officials, and thereby enhance dialogue between the sectors.
In Sri Lanka, ICNL plans to contribute a roundtable on civil society legal issues, which will help local partners plan upcoming reform priorities.
In Vietnam, ICNL has provided technical assistance and comparative perspectives on the legal framework for nonprofits, foundations, and charities and supported research on Vietnam's changing nonprofit legal framework and policy. Currently, ICNL is providing assistance on the draft Law on Associations.
To learn more about our programs in Asia and the Pacific or to request assistance, please contact David Moore - Vice President, Legal Affairs, at email@example.com.