Over 1,200 co-operators from 23 countries met in Uruguay for the 4th Co-operative Summit of the Americas. The biggest co-operative event on the continent, the summit examined the strategic plan for co-operatives in the Americas Region for 2017-2020. They also looked at the proposals coming from the strategic session at the International Summit of Cooperatives in Quebec.
The summit featured keynote presentations from the minister of Labour and Social Security, Ernesto Murro, and mayor of Montevideo, Daniel Martínez.
Mr Murro highlighted the importance of the Uruguayan co-operative movement in generating jobs in a country that “wants to build democracy with social participation”.
Mr Martínez described the co-operative movement as an important social actor that shows another way of creating and distributing wealth.
Delegates also heard from the president of the Alliance for Americas, Ramón Imperial, who talked about the changes generated by technology, with the emergence of enterprises such as Uber or Facebook.
He said this should make co-operatives be creative without giving up their values and principles. Mr Imperial also pointed out that it was important for co-operatives to remember their social mission and help achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by focusing on the co-operative ethos.
The full reports from the summit are available on www.aciamericas.coop.
Photo: Opening ceremony of the 4th Co-operative Summit of the Americas.