EU Parliament establishes Social Economy Intergroup

On 11th December the Conference of the Presidents of the European Parliament approved the re-establishment of the Social Economy Intergroup. This decision follows the support shown by more than 80 MEPs from 6 different political groups. Intergroups are ways to share views on cross-cutting issues between MEPs from different political groups and civil society. In particular, the Social Economy Intergroup can ensure a regular dialogue between the enterprises of the social economy and the European Parliament. Additionally, it is an essential tool to make sure that the European Parliament and the European Commission take social economy into account when developing their … Continue reading





Adoption of a SSE National Policy and Action Plan in Mali

On 9 October the Council of Ministers of Mali addressed the issue of the social and solidarity economy. Hamadou Konaté, Minister for Solidarity, Social Action and the reconstruction of North introduced the topic. A portion of his official statement is reproduced here: The Council of Ministers reviewed a communication on a National Policy for the Promotion of the Social and Solidarity Economy and an Action Plan for 2014-2018*. The Social and Solidarity Economy is the set activities to produce goods and services carried out by cooperatives, mutual societies, associations and other organizations. These particular businesses are based on solidarity, sharing … Continue reading





New Orleans Announces An Economic Opportunity Strategy for Disadvantaged Job Seekers and Businesses

On September 9th 2014, the Mayor of New Orleans announced a new comprehensive strategy to connect disadvantaged job seekers and businesses to new opportunities. The Economic Opportunity Strategy addresses the need for economic inclusion and supports a local call to action by advocates, community-based organizations and service providers across the New Orleans region. Spearheaded by the Mayor, the Economic Opportunity Strategy seeks to introduce a new way of connecting all New Orleanians to the city’s economic growth through partnerships with local training providers, social service agencies, and community advocates. In addition, the Strategy will include collaboration with some of the … Continue reading





MOROCCO: LAUNCH OF PROJECT “STRENGTHENING MICRO-ENTREPRENEURSHIP AMONG DISADVANTAGED YOUTH IN THE INFORMAL SECTOR”

The project “Strengthening micro-entrepreneurship among disadvantaged youth in the informal sector” was launched on Tuesday, September 23th in Fez by the “Civil Space and Fez Region Network ” (RECFR). Initiated by the Ministry of Youth and Sports in partnership with the World Bank, the project aims to assist disadvantaged young men and women aged between 18 and 30 to access to business development services and enhance their economic conditions. The project has two main components, namely support on integrated management of micro-entrepreneurship and institutional capacity building. During the project launching ceremony, the President of RECFR Ms. Khaddouj  Gharbi highlighted the … Continue reading





Co-operatives represented at the Policy Forum on Development

Twelve co-operators from Europe and the Americas took part in the first regional seminar for Latin America of the Policy Forum on Development. The seminar, jointly organised by the European Commission and Latin American civil society organisations, aimed to underline EU and global policies for development as well as help reach a common understanding of how development policies can support civil society organisations. The Policy Forum on Development was officially launched in November last year to strengthen the dialogue with civil society organisations, which is one of the objectives mentioned in the Lisbon Treaty of the European Union. At the … Continue reading





International labour conference discusses the role of cooperatives in helping transitions to the formal economy

The 103rd Session of the International Labour Conference was held in Geneva from the 28th May to the 12th June 2014. One of the main topics of the discussions was the transitioning of workers from the informal to the formal economy. This is considered central to development, inclusive growth and inclusive societies Co-operative enterprises have a strong role to play in this discussion as many workers in the informal economy see them as an adequate framework to transition to formality. The International Co-operative Alliance, represented at the Conference by Bruno Roelants, Secretary-General of CICOPA, argued that a future recommendation on … Continue reading





The government of Bolivia updates the Law on Cooperatives

In Bolivia, President Evo Morales signed a decree implementing the Law on Cooperatives enacted in April 2013, replacing a decree of 1958. This law is part of the Constitution of the Bolivian state, which recognizes the cooperative movement as one of the actors of the plural economy and is based on principles of solidarity, social purpose and non-profit. The regulation allows the government to promote and strengthen the development of cooperatives, including those aimed at increasing production and employment. It assigns new functions of conciliation and arbitration of the National Confederation of Cooperatives of Bolivia (CONCOBOL), which brings together more … Continue reading





30% tax relief for social enterprises and co-operatives set up as community interest companies in the UK

Chancellor George Osborne announced a tax relief for social investment in his Budget, designed to stimulate investment in social enterprises. However, the new tax relief will not apply to investment in co-operatives registered as industrial and provident societies (IPSs) or companies limited by guarantee (CLGs). But co-operatives set up as community interest companies and community benefit societies can benefit. “We’re backing investment into social enterprises with a social investment tax relief at a rate of 30%,” said the Chancellor. The rate will allow eligible social enterprises to receive a maximum of around £290,000 investment over 3 years, which is similar to the Enterprise Investment Scheme and Venture Capital Trusts. James … Continue reading





Spanish Ministry signs agreement to promote the reduction and management of waste through the SE

The Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Environment (MAGRAMA ) signed a Voluntary Partnership Agreement with the Koopera social network associated with the Spanish Association of recuperadores of the Social and Solidarity Economy (AERESS) to promote reuse of waste, its reintroduction into economic activity and the creation of social solidarity employment through these activities. With this agreement, actions to improve the effective management of waste such as electrical and electronic equipment, textiles, household equipment or furniture by specialized worker insertion organizations specialized in management will be supported. Following the signing of the agreement, the Executive Director of Quality and Environmental … Continue reading





Draft law on the social economy in Romania

On 11 December 2013, the Romanian government approved the draft law on Social Economy which was improved by public debates. The text is debated at present in the Senate (February 2014) and in a next step in the Chamber of deputies. To clarify the concept, a new element has been introduced, according to which Social Economy is underpinned by private, voluntary and solidarity initiatives enjoying a high degree of autonomy and responsibility as well as the limited distribution of profit to associates. The draft law approved by the government contains the two changes developed and defended by the Romanian Coalition for Social Economy regarding 1) the … Continue reading