2025 to be the second International Year of Co-operatives, 13 years after its inaugural celebration in 2012.
This came after a United Nations (UN) draft resolution was accepted by the Third Committee of the UN at its 47th plenary meeting – General Assembly, 78th session on 3 November. A resolution is a formal expression of the opinion or will of UN organs.
The draft resolution, or L 11: Co-operatives in social development, was introduced by a Mongolian representative. She said: “Co-operatives are people-centred enterprises, bringing people together in a more democratic and equal way. The contribution of co-operatives to social economic development is widely recognised.”
There are about three million co-operatives and 10 per cent of workers worldwide are either employed within a co-operative or are workers-owners of a co-operative, she added. Co-operatives, she explained, hold potential to create decent jobs and employment to foster inclusive and decent recovery, as well as address inequalities in the post pandemic landscape.
“The very first International Day of Co-operatives, celebrated in 2012, had huge success in promoting co-operatives and raising awareness of their contribution of development goals at all levels,” she said.
Co-sponsored by over 100 nations, the UN resolution also underscores the relevance of co-operatives in different domains, including resilient and inclusive food systems; the economic status of women; and the wellbeing and development of all persons—such as youths, persons with disabilities, rural communities and indigenous people.
The UN resolution also encourages government bodies to consult co-operatives as part of their National Reviews.
Welcoming the adoption of the new UN resolution, Mr Ariel Guarco, the President of International Co-operative Alliance, added: “The proclamation of a new International Year of Co-operatives 13 years after the first one proves the strong recognition by the UN and national governments of the capacity of co-operatives to push forward the Agenda 2030 and build a fairer and more prosperous world for everyone.”