The International Journal
of Not-for-Profit Law
Volume 6, Issue 2, February 2004
By Nicole Etchart, Brian Milder, Maria Cecilia Jara, and Lee Davis
NESsT, an international NGO that helps civil society organizations (CSOs) develop entrepreneurial self-financing strategies, has published these guides to the legal frameworks in Colombia and Chile. The volumes are both descriptive and analytical, relying on a methodology developed by the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law. The Colombia guide stresses the need for greater clarity in the rules for CSOs. Some provisions in Colombian law are vague, such as the method for determining which activities are mission-related and which are not; and in some instances, officials construe and apply the laws in ways that seem contrary to the legislative intent. The Chile guide recommends enactment of legislation that extends preferential treatment–which now is limited to welfare institutions–to all CSOs. And both guides call for exempting CSOs from VAT on purchases that relate directly to their mission activities.