Jordan launches national strategy for the cooperative movement, with ILO support

The strategy, launched under the patronage of the Prime Minister, aims to build a prosperous, autonomous, inclusive and self-reliant cooperative movement in Jordan.

خبر | ٠٣ يوليو, ٢٠٢١
Dead Sea, Jordan (ILO News) The Jordan Cooperative Corporation (JCC), with the support of the International Labour Organization (ILO), has launched a national strategy for the cooperative movement in Jordan, which seeks to strengthen the role of cooperatives in enhancing decent work and productivity in different economic sectors in the country.

During an event on Saturday (July 3), held Under the Patronage of His Excellency Jordan's Prime Minister Bisher Al-Khasawneh, the new strategy was unveiled, highlighting its key activities and outcomes, to build "a prosperous, autonomous, inclusive and self-reliant cooperative movement” in the country.

The blended event brought together high level representatives, including the Minister of Agriculture Khaled Hneifat, as well as the Director General of the Jordan Cooperative Corporation Abdel Fattah Al Shalabi, ILO Deputy Regional Director for Arab States Frank Hagemann and a wide range of representatives of concerned stakeholders.

“There is a need to develop the Jordanian cooperative movement, due to its importance in contributing to the development of local communities, and to develop the tools and means to bring about change towards a cooperative movement that is more widespread and more influential in Jordan’s society," said Minister of Agriculture Khaled Hneifat during the launch.

The launch was held on the occasion of the International Day of Cooperatives, which takes place annually on the first Saturday of July, to raise awareness on the role of cooperatives in advancing decent work and sustainable development through their values of mutualism, self-help and solidarity.

"The ILO considers cooperatives as critical in advancing its mandate for social justice, and the ILO has supported cooperative development for 100 years now,” said ILO’s Deputy Regional Director Frank Hagemann. “We have been working closely with the cooperative movement in Jordan to strengthen its capacity to advance livelihoods opportunities for Jordanian, refugee, and migrant women and men, particularly those employed in the agricultural sector. We shall continue to assist the Jordan Cooperative Corporation and our constituents in the framework of the national strategy in order to enhance the role of cooperatives in promoting decent work and productivity not just in agriculture, but in different economic sectors in the country.”

The strategy was developed through consultation with a national steering committee formed by the Government of Jordan and led by JCC, to include representatives of key ministries and social partners, as well as experts in the field of the cooperative movement.

It is intended to serve as a five-year strategic document for Jordan’s cooperative movement, and as a guidance document for JCC, and other agencies and development partners supporting or involved in cooperative promotion in Jordan. It builds on three main outcomes: a conducive environment for the Jordanian cooperative movement; an efficient service infrastructure for cooperatives and unions; and autonomous, self-reliant cooperatives providing efficient services to members.

“The strategy represents a new start for cooperative work and the cooperative movement in Jordan. It adopts several outputs, the most important of which is the existence of an enabling environment for cooperatives and which includes revising legislation that govern cooperative work, in addition to establishing autonomous and self-reliant cooperatives based on cooperative principles and values that serve their members,” said JCC Director General Abdel Fattah Al Shalabi.

The strategy was developed with technical and financial support from the ILO in Jordan, under PROSPECTS, a programme spearheaded by the Government of the Netherlands, and in close collaboration with the ILO’s Global Cooperatives Unit  (COOP). It is part of wider efforts by the ILO under PROSPECTS to promote the role of cooperatives in advancing decent work and sustainable development through providing improved technical services to their members, providing career guidance and job placement services to Jordanians, refugees and migrant workers in the agriculture sector, and supporting improved working conditions and occupational safety and health for all workers. 

“Advancing decent work opportunities is one of the main aims of Dutch development programming in Jordan. The launch of the national strategy for the cooperative movement signifies a milestone in strengthening cooperatives to ensure decent job creation and work across the agricultural value chain. The Netherlands is proud to support the Government of Jordan in the development and implementation of this work through the Prospects partnership,” said the Chargé d'Affaires a.i. of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, H.E. Mr. Dolf Hogewoning.

PROSPECTS is a four-year global partnership between the Netherlands, the ILO, the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the World Bank, which operates in eight countries across the East and the Horn of Africa and the Middle East to support education, employment and protection in the context of forced displacement.

Following the official launch, a workshop was held with relevant stakeholders and constituents to discuss the details of the activities of the action plan and mechanisms to implement the strategy.