International Year of Cooperatives kicks off today in New York

The United Nations launched the International Year of Cooperatives (IYC) today in a ceremony held in New York. The event was opened with a round table about the contributions of cooperatives to sustainable development. Several key actors of the cooperative movement discussed the impact of cooperatives in development with a specific focus on food security, financial and economic stability, and environmental sustainability and the resilience of the cooperative enterprise model as driving their strong role in these areas.

31 October 2011

The Secretary General of Mondragón Corporation, María Arantzazu Laskurain, highlighted the importance of inter-cooperation in the cooperative field and the magnitude of cooperatives in creating “high value employment and sharing the wealth”.

The discussion was followed by the open ceremony and plenary meeting chaired by the President of the General Assembly, Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, the Deputy Secretary-General, on behalf of the Secretary-General, Asha-Rose Migiro, the International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) President, Dame Pauline Green and the former British Prime Minister, Gordon Brown.

In the ceremony a film produced by the International Labour Organisation was also presented. It can be viewed on the following link:

If you missed the emission broadcast of the ceremony, you can still watch the podcast here:

The official ICA launching will take place on 16th November at the General Assembly Opening Ceremony in Cancun (Mexico). At this occasion, CICOPA and IHCO will organise a world conference on cooperatives and development on 17th November. The Way Forward will engage a cutting edge debate with key actors in the field of development including the United Nations, UNDP, NGO’s, and national governments, etc. Check out our website:

Related article:

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
E-mail: cicopa[at]

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