Anna Kucinska
13 October 2014

The European Conference on social economy in November: Cooperatives Europe's contribution to the related consultations

The European Conference on social economy will be held in Rome on November 17 and 18 under the Italian EU Presidency.
Cooperatives Europe has sent its contribution to the consultation on ‘Unlocking the potential of social economy for EU growth’ organised by the Italian government in preparation of the conference.

Cooperatives Europe considers that this conference should have three main objectives:
1) to promote social economy as a key pillar of the EU economy,
2) to recognize the diversity and plurality of businesses within the EU including the various social economy actors in order to provide a level playing field for all different business forms,
3) and to develop recommendations for strengthening the social economy within the EU’s internal market.

Cooperatives are the largest players within the Social Economy representing around 50% of all social economy enterprises and employment. Given their importance in the EU economy, cooperatives have been leading the struggle for recognition of the plurality of business forms in the EU.
In 2013 the EU Commission launched a regular dialogue with cooperatives from all sectors and countries in the EU, initiated by Commissioner for Enterprise & Industry, Vice-President Tajani, in order to jointly develop a EU cooperative roadmap. This roadmap aims to put forward concrete policy recommendations for EU and national policymakers in critical development areas for cooperatives, such as in financing and business development services as well as with regard to cooperative education and entrepreneurship.

The conference will be an opportunity to go deeply into how European cooperatives and other social economy enterprises can work with the EU to further growh, creating jobs and opportunities.

Read the contribution here.