The Reality and Perspectives of the Social and Solidarity Economy in the City of Praia

Date: 
Monday, August 20, 2018
Category: 
Publication
Research
Publisher: 
GSEF, CITI-Habitat

Title: The Reality and Perspectives of the Social and Solidarity Economy in the City of Praia 

Year: May 2018

Publisher: CITI-Habitat (in partnership with GSEF)

Summary (Excerpt from the report)

(* photo: www.guloutang.org)

The Municipality of Praia, since the institutionalization of Democratic Local Power in Cape Verde on December 15, 1991, no policy to promote and develop the Social and Solidarity Economy (SSE) has been implemented. Consequently, there has been no specialized service on the matter or a database on the existence of formally constituted organizations of Social and Solidarity Economy, nor the dynamics and impact of its interventions in improving conditions of the poorest populations and in the overall development of the Municipality has been much acknowledged. However, partnerships and relationships have been established, mainly with associations and NGOs, in the implementation of community projects and investments and social support activities in the areas of social housing, pre-school education, health education, drinking water supply, basic sanitation, sport and culture. It also works in collaboration with NGOs and associations dealing with care for the elderly, at-risk children, the homeless and people with disabilities. There has been no financing for income-generating activities carried out by Social and Solidarity Economy organizations. The present study establishes a basis to help the Municipality of Praia to adopt a municipal policy for the promotion and development of the Social and Solidarity Economy, as well the study will contribute to the structuring of the informal economy, strongly developed in the City of Praia. Therefore, the recommendations and conclusions of this study constitute priority axes for the formulation of a Program for the Promotion and Development of the Social and Solidarity Economy in the City of Praia:

1: Strengthening of the capacity and improvement of the institutional framework of the Municipality of Praia in the promotion of SSE. o Training/capacity building of municipal technicians in the areas of SSE and local economic development, with regards to creating institutional capacity, with internal autonomy in the formulation of proposals and measures of policies for the promotion and development of SSE in the Municipality of Praia; o Creation of an organizational unit with specific responsibilities for the promotion and development of SSE with the capacity to mobilize resources from the municipal budget, as well as to implement the resources provided from the municipal budget for the SSE sector; o Creation of a Specialized Commission of SSE in the Municipal Assembly of Praia and adoption of a Municipal Charter of promotion and development of SSE in the Municipality; o Creation of a Municipal Consultation Council for the promotion of SSE, which would also serve as an SSE Local Observatory. In addition to reflecting and recommending specific policy measures, the council would function as an advisory body of the Praia Municipal Chamber with regards to the SSE sector, as well as it would serve as a space of articulation and consultation between various actors involved in the local economic development of the Praia Municipality; o A strong and systematic articulation in public policies for the development of municipal social economy networks, with the objective of integrating SSE into macro-social and economic policies, since the social economy is seen by the Government as a "form of economic organization and a form of producing services which has a decisive role in the expansion of employment, equal opportunities and the promotion of social, environmental and historical assets that support local and regional development. o Adoption of a Municipal Plan for the Promotion and Development of SSE 2016/2020 with its annual action plans, incorporating measures of governmental policies in the areas of social care and inclusion, strengthening and capacity building of CSOs, vocational training and youth entrepreneurship, national gender plan, broadening access to microfinance services, in coordination with the Ministry of Family and Inclusion, Employment and Professional Training Institute, PROEMPRESA – Business Support and Promotion Institute, Ministry of Finance, Institute Gender Equality, Platform of NGOs, Professional Association of Microfinance Institutions and partners of decentralized, Bilateral and Multilateral International Cooperation.

2: Ecosystem for financing the projects and entrepreneurships in SSE o Design and implementation of a financing ecosystem, with the resources from the Municipality of Praia, State/Central Administration, Microfinance Institutions, social solidarity finance, subsidies from bilateral and multilateral cooperation, NGOs and decentralized international cooperation. Particular attention should be given to the refinancing of Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) for the promotion of entrepreneurships in the form of social economy organizations. o Coordination with entrepreneurship promotion programs, vocational training for employment and other initiatives to promote employment, with emphasis on young women and female headed households. 9 o Functional decentralization of the actions of the Municipality in the social sphere for solidarity organizations, by contracting services - outsourcing - as one of the ways to strengthen and broaden capacity to respond to the demands of more vulnerable and at-risk social groups and at the same time to promote proximity social employment and the channeling of resources to social solidarity organizations.

3: Tax Incentives and Other Facilities o Taking into account that the activities of Social and Solidarity Economy entities do not aim at the profitability of invested capital, but rather at the reinvestment in the continuity of their mission, which is why the distribution of surpluses is limited in cooperatives and prohibited in mutual societies and non-profit associations. Considering that the social patrimony of these organizations are indivisible and in case of dissolution it will be under the protection of the Municipality until associative initiatives are of the same nature and objective, it is recommended to exempt the payment of the Unique Tax on the "IUP" of the license fees for the construction of social equipment and its own headquarters, fees for the licensing of economic activities, requesting in return the provision of social services within the framework of municipal programs of a social and educational nature. o In the framework of urban planning, through Detailed Urban Plans, it is recommended the creation and transfer of lands for the installation of local productive activities, within the framework of a municipal policy of structuring the informal economy through organizations and enterprises of Social and Solidarity Economy. The lands ceded would continue to be properties of the Municipality, and the facilities to support the productive activity should always be of collective use and management. o Promotion, in coordination with the IEFP - Institute of Employment and Vocational Training, PROEMPRESA - Business Support and Promotion Institute and specialized SEE organizations, programs to promote entrepreneurship, vocational training activities, technical assistance to management and support in market access.

4: Gender dimension and empowerment of women through SSE o Implementation of a specific program to assist the economic emancipation of women through Social and Solidarity Economy organizations, as well as to support the structuring of informal economy by women, working upstream (access to financing and acquisition of factors of production), in the production process of goods and services (joint use of warehouse and storage spaces) and downstream (distribution and market orientation); o Implementation of a program to train and empower women to make themselves more participatory in the life of the organizations of which they are part and to assume the management functions of the SSE organizations. o Implementation of municipal policies in terms of the creation of social facilities (kindergartens, preschool and support for children in school activities) in order to allow women, especially heads of households, to focus on their economic activities - as source of support and education of the children, 10 as well as of municipal policies more favorable for initiation and maintenance of self-managed economic activities.

5: Strengthening and capacity building of technical and institutional abilities for Social and Solidarity Economy organizations, based in the Municipality of Praia. o Conduct a training activity in coordination with the NGO Platform of Cape Verde of in the areas of governance of SSE organizations; project design, local economic development, solidarity social finance, information technology and education for development , applied associative law, assisted social care, etc., with a view to a growing professionalization of SSE organizations; o Implementation of technical assistance and management support activities through mobilization of endogenous capacities of SSE organizations as well as mobilization of specialized external partners; o Creation of an SSE Municipal Forum, as an autonomous organization, composed of all the organizations, besides deciding priorities of SSE development in the Praia Council in various aspects. The Forum would function as a consultative body and partner of the City Municipality of Praia in the definition and implementation of policies in relation to the SSE and a space of agreement among the local associated actors; o Creation and promotion of a network economy, based on value chains, in order to structure the SSE and the institutionalization of the Seal of the SSE products of Praia, valuing local resources, recyclable waste, creativity, fair trade, sustainable consumption and the sustainable use of environmental resources; o Implementation of partner education programs and financial education in order to contribute to organizational and management sustainability, as well as the perpetuation of SEE organizations as local development actors and agents of local and community economic and social transformation.