CICOPA-Americas celebrated its first Ordinary Assembly in Panama, in the framework of the II Cooperative Summit of the Americas. During the assembly the objectives for the next three years were established to consolidate the organisation in the continent and to coordinate the activities organised on the occasion of the United Nations International Year of Cooperatives 2012.
CICOPA-Americas members expressed their concerns about the lack of proper regulations for worker cooperatives in some regions and they emphasized the lack of control and supervision on pseudo worker cooperatives in Colombia. The assembly also showed its support for the worker cooperatives in the United States in their commitment to a more specific legislation, and the member of the cooperative movement in Cuba, that wishes to organise itself in accordance with the cooperative principles of the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA).
On the same day, the Seminar of Worker Cooperatives took place, for which the objectives were strengthening the relations among worker cooperatives in the American regions, improving the exchange of information and the elaboration of common action plans. The panellists were the President of CICOPA-Americas, Arildo Mota Lopes; the President of CICOPA-Mercosur, José Orbaiceta; and the President of CICOPA-North America, Rebecca Kemble.
In an interview with members of the organisation, Kemble highlighted that the main conclusion of the event was the idea of large-scale cooperation and partnerships at all levels. “We need that all our individual cooperative members understood the importance of inter-cooperation with other cooperatives. We have to stop looking inwards and start looking at the world around us, to look at the different levels of communities where we are”, she explained.
CICOPA-Americas was founded in November 2011 to be the CICOPA world organisation for the American continent, it integrates two sub-regional organisations: CICOPA-Mercosur and CICOPA-North America.
International Organisation of Industrial, Artisanal and
Service Producers' Cooperatives
Secretariat: C/O European Cooperative House - avenue Milcamps 105
1030 Brussels, Belgium
Tel: +32 2 543 1033, fax: +32 2 543 1037