International Day of Cooperatives Promotes Economic Growth

July 6, 2013 – MUSCLE SHOALS, Ala., USA – On this day each year, the United Nations’ (UN) General Assembly invites all member governments, international organizations, specialized agencies and national and international cooperative organizations to join in the celebration of the International Day of Cooperatives.

Designed to increase global awareness of cooperatives and their impact on economic, social and cultural development, the international day aims to bolster and broaden the partnerships between the international cooperative movement and supporting organizations. This year’s theme, “Cooperative enterprise remains strong in times of crisis,” contrasts the resiliency of cooperatives to shareholder businesses during economic trial.

Cooperatives play an active part in creating and maintaining employment worldwide and are significant economic factors in several national economies. As such, IFDC recognizes and supports the International Day of Cooperatives, realizing that strengthening cooperatives and associations is a strong component of value chain development; bolstering cooperative organizations strengthens other linkages along the value chain, from farmers to consumers.

IFDC, through the Agricultural Growth Program-Agribusiness and Market Development (AGP-AMDe) project in Ethiopia, gives financial and knowledge-based support to cooperatives. In addition to other objectives, AGP-AMDe builds the capacity of the cooperative sector to operate as successful agribusinesses to benefit their members and improve market competitiveness and access for smallholder farmers. The project is also transforming cooperatives in coordination with the Agricultural Transformation Agency’s (ATA) cooperative development strategy implemented by the Federal Cooperative Agency (FCA) and promoting private sector stakeholders to expand delivery of services along with value and volume of inputs and outputs. AGP-AMDe activities are closely aligned with the FCA initiative to strengthen primary cooperatives, multipurpose cooperatives, rural savings and credit cooperatives and cooperative unions and to recommend management improvement measures and inclusion of women in leadership positions. AGP-AMDe is an ACDI/VOCA project funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development.

The UN Secretary General’s July 6 message can be found at http://ica.coop/en/events/international-co-operative-day-2013.

IFDC, headquartered in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, USA, is a public international organization, governed by an international board of directors with representation from developed and developing countries. The nonprofit Center, with over 700 employees involved in projects that span more than 35 countries in Africa and Eurasia, is supported by various bilateral and multilateral aid agencies, private foundations and national governments.

IFDC focuses on increasing and sustaining food security and agricultural productivity in developing countries through the development and transfer of effective and environmentally sound crop nutrient technology and agribusiness expertise.

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IFDC Contact:

Courtney Greene
cgreene@ifdc.org
256/381-6600 ext. 357

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