Press conference: International Year of Co-operatives officially launched in Europe


On January, 12 co-operatives and co-operative organisations across Europe and the world celebrated the start of the International Year of Co-operatives.

Cooperatives Europe, together with the European organisations representing co-operative sectors held a major press conference at the presence of Ms Pervenche Berès, Member of the European Parliament and Chair of the Employment and Social Affairs Committee, and Mr Luis Manuel Capoulas Santos, Member of the European Parliament.

The press conference was used as an opportunity to present the main initiatives that co-operatives will deploy at European level throughout 2012, in particular the European Co-operative Week, which will be held in Brussels from 23-27 April.

Furthermore the co-operatives’ European agenda ’Co-operatives for Europe: Moving Forward Together’ was officialy released. This political agenda builds on the Europe 2020 strategy by bringing forward co-operative solutions. It stresses a more co-operative way of doing business, which is modern, collective, responsible and sustainable. The aim of this agenda is to provide a platform for a dialogue with policymakers, in order to bring about concrete solutions for today’s key economic, social and environmental challenges.

“Economic and political stakeholders’ short-sighted vision brought us into the current crisis; co-operative enterprises, on the contrary, work with a long-term, sustainable perspective” said Pervenche Berès. “There is a totally unexploited potential which the International Year should put forward. The objective of 2012 is to make clear the modernity of the co-operative movement”.

“European co-operatives are a force to be reckoned with. However, more needs to be done to ensure the diversity of business models in Europe and thereby the long-term stability of the economy”, commented Etienne Pflimlin, Co-president of Cooperatives Europe.

Press Kit

Co-operatives for Europe – Moving Forward Together (download)

General Press Release (link)

INFO SHEET on European organisations representing co-operatives (download)

INFO SHEET on the International Year of Co-operatives (download)

Sectoral press releases: Cecodhas Housing Europe, Euro Coop, EACB, Cecop, Cogeca.

Press contact: Mirko Nodari

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