1.7 Funding youth policy
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How Youth policy is funded
Youth Policy does not have a specific budget line in the Governmental Budget.
In 2021 the total budget of the Agency of Youth and Sports is 1.084.142.966 MKD, and it is the largest budget the AYS has had in recent years. In comparison to 2020, the total budget of the Agency of Youth and Sport was 538.760.000,99 MKD (app 872299340 EUR), in 2019, the total budget of the Agency of Youth and Sport was 590.902.000,00 MKD (app. 9.608.249,58 EUR), of which 24.728.000 (around 402.085,00 EUR) were intended for the youth sector, while in 2018, the Agency had a budget in the amount of 484.413.000,00 MKD (app. 7.871.073,00 EUR), of which 31.386.000,00 MKD (509.981,00 EUR) for the youth sector.
According to the National Youth Strategy 2016-2025, 9 priorities are defined and each includes set of measures. Specific ministry or institution is responsible to implement the measures under each priority. Thus, the budget for the measures falls under the budget for those specific institutions/ministries.
No disaggregated data on budget for youth measures exists for the institutions except the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy, responsible for youth employment.
According to The Action Plan for Youth Employment 2016 – 2020 (Акциски план за вработување на млади 2016-2020), total planned amount for realization of the Action plan was 30.950.000,00 EUR. Since the Action Plan’s expiration, a new Action Plan for Youth Employment has not been adopted.
In the beginning of 2018, the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy together with the Employment Service Agency and the National Youth Council of Macedonia started the realization of the pilot project Youth Guarantee which measures are funded through the Operational plan for active programs and measures for employment and services on the labor market (Operational plan). In 2018 the total budget for employment measures within the Operational Plan were 1.045.794.835 MKD, while the budget for 2019 was 1.219.789.600 MKD. Operation Plan for 2019 put special emphasis on youth unemployed people up to 29 years of age. (More about the Youth Guarantee in chapter 3.1) The total budget in the Operational plan for 2020 is 1.805.654.260 MKD. For 2021 the budget is increased in comparison with previous years and the total budget in the Operational plan (Ревидиран Оперативен план за активни програми и мерки за вработување и услуги на пазарот на трудот за 2021 година ) is 1.816.690.886 MKD.
The new Law on Youth Participation and Youth Policies envisages that: (1) For the implementation of this law, funds in the amount of at least 0.3% shall be allocated annually from the Budget of the Republic of North Macedonia. (2) From the budgets of the municipalities, the municipalities in the City of Skopje and the City of Skopje, funds in the amount of at least 0.1% on annual level shall be allocated.
 Government of the Republic of Macedonia. Ministry of Labor and Social Policy “Action plan for Youth Employment 2016-2020”, p.45 http://dit.gov.mk/wp-content/uploads/2017/08/2016_Akciski-plan-za-vrabotuvanje-mladi-2016-2020-godina_MK-pv-.pdf (Accessed October 30, 2018)
 Government of the Republic of Macedonia. Ministry of Labor and Social Policy “Action plan for Youth Employment 2015”, p.59 http://www.mtsp.gov.mk/content/pdf/vrabotuvanje_mladi_akciski.pdf (Accessed October 30, 2018)
What is funded?
Employment measures for young people were funded in Action Plan for Youth Employment 2016 – 2020 (Ревидиран акциски план за вработување на млади 2016-2020). This action plan was operationalized into annual plans with specific budget for young people aged 15 – 29, as described in the previous section.
Additionally, the Law on Youth Participation and Youth Policies, as mentioned in the previous section, allocates national and municipal budgetary funds for the implementation of the Law. Based on the Law itself, those funds will go towards creation of mechanisms for youth participation (Local Youth Councils), youth policies (National Youth Strategy and Local Youth Strategies) and youth services (Youth Centers, Youth Officers, Youth Offices).
Use of EU Funds
By priority, IPA funds are used for the implementation of the Youth Employment measures, administered by the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy. No other data on usage of EU funds are available.
In addition, it’s worth mentioning the Western Balkans Youth Lab Project, a three-year EU funded (1,5 million EUR) and RCC implemented project that kicked-off in January 2020, which aims to provide opportunities for youth to participate in decision-making. The project is covering the Western Balkans Six economies (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo*, Montenegro, Serbia and North Macedonia). The Western Balkans Youth Lab (WBYL) Project strives to create a longer-term structured regional dialogue between youth organizations and national administrations focused on jointly devising policies which will increase youth participation in decision-making, to improve the overall socio-economic environment for and mobility of youth in the Western Balkans economies through different types of activities, with focus of policies.