10 November 2021
Balkan Green Foundation (BGF), was part of the panel discussion ‘Sustainable Entrepreneurship in Kosovo’, organized by the American Chamber of Commerce in Kosovo, in the framework of Global Entrepreneurship Week Kosovo.
Shpend Mustafa, Project Coordinator at BGF, discussed about the importance of institutional support for young start-ups in Kosovo, and shared details of BGF’s work which helps sustainable development ecosystem in Kosovo and beyond.
The panel brought together different actors who shared their experiences, contribution, and ideas to improve sustainable entrepreneurship in Kosovo.
Shpend, presented two BGF’s projects about social entrepreneurship, that have shown a large contribution to young entrepreneurs in Kosovo, the Western Balkans and Greece. ‘Balkan Green Ideas (BGI), is the only program in the region that stimulates youth and encourages them to be ambitious entrepreneurs, by primarily focusing their ideas for positive environmental and social impact’, said Shpend. Shpend, also presented BGF’s second project - Regional Incubator for Social Entrepreneurs (RISE) - which supports young change-makers in developing their impactful ideas into sustainable social businesses, by mentoring, training and financially supporting them on ideating, prototyping, and implementing their social enterprises.
Regarding institutional actions needed in Kosovo, Shpend said that ‘there are two immediate actions Kosovo should undertake: 1. Ensure that policies are aligned with best sustainable practices, and 2. Support young entrepreneurs that are ideating start-ups that involve environmentally and socially sustainable practices into their operations.’
The panel concluded that: (i) there are several challenges, but, two main ones remain infrastructure and product positioning in the market; (ii) there is a need for immediate actions from all stakeholders regarding sustainability; (iii) sustainable investments shall promptly start and the support by public institutions shall be followed by companies and customer behavior.