Cooperatives of the Americas sign agreement with ECLAC

Within the framework of the implementation of the 2020-2023 Strategic Plan and as an advocacy strategy against the Intergovernmental Organizations of the Region, on Thursday, August 6, the webinar "Cooperative companies in Latin America and the Caribbean in the face of the COVID pandemic" was held. -19: strategies for reactivation”.

In this space, enriched by the participation of the members of the Board of Directors and Representatives of the Network of Promotion Organizations, it was possible to analyze, through the intervention of ECLAC experts, the economic, financial and labor scenarios that affect companies cooperatives in Latin America, also making progress in identifying possible public policy measures.

ECLAC estimates that before the end of 2020, 2,7 million companies could close, equivalent to 19% of all firms in the region. In terms of employment, this would generate the destruction of more than 8,5 million jobs, representing 8,1% of total formal employment in the business sector.

According to Giovanni Stumpo, Head of ECLAC's Investment and Business Strategies Unit, the impact will be very different depending on the sector and the type of company, as is the case of the cooperative sector, which demonstrates the resilience of the sector in contrast to other production models. of the economy,

Graciela Fernández Quintas, President of Cooperatives, for her part, opened the panel highlighting this activity as a highly important milestone for the Regional Office of the International Cooperative Alliance for the Americas. “For cooperativism in our Region, ECLAC has always been a key reference, and we recognized in its own history one of the greatest efforts to systematize the meaning of continental cooperativism in the mid-80s, which we are sure marks a very important milestone. in cooperative development in the Region in the coming years.”

Next, the impact of the crisis was analyzed from an economic and financial approach led by Esteban Pérez Caldentey, Economic Affairs Officer of ECLAC in a dissertation with the participation of Alfredo Arana - President of the Regional Committee of Financial Cooperatives and Cooperative Banks of Cooperativas de las Américas, Carla Decker President of Credit Union, NCBA-CLUSA, and Luis Alves – President of the Regional Committee for Industrial, Artisanal Production and Services Cooperatives of the Americas; One of the great conclusions of this space confirms that this is the moment for cooperatives, a moment to fill ourselves with strength to recharge ourselves with cooperative values ​​and principles, which offers new alternatives and more humane criteria.

In the second phase of the conversation, a dissertation was given on public policies and cooperativism, with the participation of leaders of cooperative development organizations led by Marco Dini, ECLAC Economic Affairs Officer. Martín Fernández Aizcorbe, President of INACOOP Uruguay and coordinator of the Network of Organizations for the Promotion of Cooperatives of the Americas, who highlighted the growth of the cooperative movement in Uruguay, which means a great challenge for the movement to be sustainable based on its management from public policies. For his part, Sebastían Valdecantos, Director of Cooperative and Mutual Development and Promotion, INAES Argentina He highlighted two important challenges in the sector: the financing of the social and solidarity economy and the training and awareness of the sector to public opinion. While Alejandro Calderón Ortega, Director of Planning INFOCOOP of Costa Rica highlighted the importance of socializing the cooperative company.

Signature of the cooperation agreement

To facilitate joint activities, Cooperatives of the Americas and the United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) signed a technical cooperation framework agreement that will be in force for five years, marking a historic milestone for Cooperatives of the Americas and its associates.

Mario Cimoli, Deputy Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) highlighted the role of cooperatives, and the importance of creating a company from a human perspective, keeping the balance with the planet, and the territory is key and essential to generate sustainable development, and affirmed "Cooperatives should be an industrial and social Policy, from now on ECLAC is not only a sounding board but also a strategic ally for effective and profound policies."

To which the President replied during the closing of this meeting saying, “We pride ourselves on being a strategic sector for an exit that deepens Equality and Democracy on the continent. Having the support of ECLAC, helping the Movement and our Governments to deepen the information, knowledge and meaning of our sector is key.”

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