- Start-up support
Consultanţă şi asistenţă pentru începerea unei activităţi independente sau pentru iniţierea unei afaceri - Legea nr. 76/2002 privind sistemul asigurărilor pentru şomaj şi stimularea ocupării forţei de muncă
Consultancy and assistance for grassroot entrepreneurial or business initiatives, available upon request as legal, marketing, financial, management, etc., services - Law no. 76/2002 on unemployment benefit and employment stimulation
This instrument is available to employees who are to be made redundant and to persons who are at risk of losing their job. The employee has to request this service. According to the existing legislation, the employer is obliged to inform the local employment agency at least 30 days before notifying workers that they are to be made redundant.
The local employment agency is providing free of charge consulting and support services to the employees who will be redundant for starting an independent business activity. The support refers to legal, marketing, financial, efficient management methods and techniques, as well as other consulting services.
- National funds
The unemployment benefit budget provides financial support for the practical implementation of this measure.
Public employment services
Local employment agencies act as providers of consulting and support services for setting up a new business.
Private providers of consultancy and assistance services for setting up a new business: consultancy and assistance to start a new business can also be provided by private companies, professional organisations, foundations and associations specialised in these fields. With this aim, the employment agencies conclude contracts with such private providers (Article 71 of the Law no 75/2002).
Territorial employment agencies are implementing public-private partnership projects to identify potential private providers of consultancy/assistance and to create a network of private service providers. There is no obligation for private firms to participate in such programmes.
The services offered by private companies also take place through the employment agencies which select them. Nonetheless, the basis for selection remains limited, hence one of the weaknesses of the instrument.
In recent years, the rate of new businesses that were started thanks to this instrument was lower than expected. In 2018, 46 persons initiated an independent activity or business from a total of 423 beneficiary persons of this type of services (Quarterly statistical bulletin on labour and social protection). In 2017, from 651 beneficiaries in total, only 53 initiated an independent activity or business (Quarterly statistical bulletin on labour and social protection). From the 750 beneficiaries in 2016, only 100 started an independent activity or business in 2016. This represents only 52.63% to what was previously foreseen (Quarterly statistical bulletin on labour and social protection). Consultancy for starting an independent business activity was provided in 2015 to 2,455 people, of whom only 109 (4.44%) succeeded in starting their own business (58 of them were women). This represents 57.37% of the target for 2015 (Quarterly statistical bulletin on labour and social protection). In 2014, the beneficiaries of the measure amounted to 1,071 people, of whom 135 (12.61%) initiated a business (Quarterly statistical bulletin on labour and social protection). In 2013, the beneficiaries of the measure were 2,478, of whom 6.54% started a new business as effect of this measure. This represents 68.94% of the target for 2013 (Quarterly statistical bulletin on labour and social protection).
This tool can be used even before job loss; employees may anticipate such a future dismissal. In addition, the creation of new businesses can support future employment creation.
An important weakness of this type of measure is the relatively small number of beneficiaries who effectively started an independent activity. In 2013-2017, the percentage of the beneficiaries who managed to set up a business as a result of specialised services reached an average of 9-10% (10,87 in 2018, 8% in 2017, 13% in 2016, 4.44% in 2015, 12.51% in 2014 and 6.54% in 2013).
By contrast, consultancy for finding a new job appeared to be more effective. In 2015, a new national employment programme entered into force in Romania, created by the National Agency for Employment and approved by the Ministry of Labour, on the ground of the Government Decision no. 344/2014. Based on this programme, aiming to ensure employment support, the number of beneficiaries of information and professional counselling services increased in 2015, and reached 661,980 persons. Of these, 61,479 were employed thanks to counselling services for finding a job.