On 20th April 2016, Cooperatives Europe celebrated its 10th Anniversary at the annual member meeting, held at Bibliotheque Solvay, in Brussels. In his opening speech Dirk J. Lehnhoff, President of Cooperatives Europe, highlighted the major achievements of Cooperatives Europe over the last 10 years in becoming a recognised actor for representing cooperatives at European level.
On 20th April, Cooperatives Europe organised a panel discussion on the refugee challenge in Europe as part of its 10th anniversary member meeting in Brussels. Cooperators from Sweden, Italy, Israel and Turkey presented their experiences in working with refugees over the last 18 months in Southern Europe. They illustrated a number of concrete actions in engaging with refugees in Italy or Macedonia for example. Mr.
On Friday 18th March, Neven Mimica – EU Commissioner in charge of International Cooperation & Development, signed a multi-annual framework partnership agreement with the ICA global and regional offices. This agreement was driven by Cooperatives Europe’s development work over the last decade.
On Tuesday, 24th February, 2016, nearly thirty Italian Members of the European Parliament from major political groups met with the Italian cooperative movement. “We will keep cultivating an open and fruitful relationship” said MEP Patrizia Toia, expressing her support for the strengthening of the relationship between the cooperative movement and the European Parliament.
Cooperatives Europe, together with other Civil Society Organisations (CSO) from the sustainable development, environment and social sectors have addressed a letter to Frans Timmermans, First Vice-President of the European Commission, calling on the EU and its member states to develop a Sustainable Development Strategy with a timeline of 2030 and establish a concrete implementation and follow-up plan as well as a monitoring system.
On 7th December 2015 the EU Council in its Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs configuration (EPSCO), adopted conclusions on the promotion of Social Economy as a key driver of economic and social development in Europe.