Brazilian co-operatives attend B20 launch event in Rio de Janeiro

Co-operatives can also participate in the Civil Society (C20) Working Groups

Co-operatives were represented at the official launch of the Business 20 Brazil (B20) in Rio de Janeiro on 29 January. 

A business-focused component of the G20, the B20 brings together business leaders from across the Group of 20 member countries. Throughout the year, representatives from global industrial and commercial enterprises, including co-ops, will meet to discuss policy recommendations for the annual meeting of the G20 leaders from the world’s major economies.

The launch event was organised by the National Confederation of Industry (CNI) and featured 300 representatives and leaders from the world’s 20 largest economies, including Brazil’s vice-president, Geraldo Alckmin. The Organization of Brazilian Co-operatives (OCB System) was present.

During the meeting over 100 technical and consultive meeting groups were launched. These conversations will take place via eight working groups on sustainable food systems & agriculture; energy transition & climate; trade & investment; employment & education; digital transformation; and finance & infrastructure; women, diversity & inclusion in business; and integrity & compliance.

OCB System will represent the international co-operative movement in four of these eight B20 task forces: sustainable food systems & agriculture; energy transition & climate; trade & investment; integrity & compliance; employment & education. OCB says it will strive to increase the awareness and recognition of co-operatives as drivers of sustainable development, economic growth, and social cohesion around the world.

“OCB System aims to build a draft proposal to include co-operatives in G20’s recommendations, that will be presented during the G20’s Heads of States and Government Summit, on 17 and 18 November,” said OCB’s coordinator of international relations, João Marcos Silva Martins.

A forum for international economic co-operation, the G20 Summit brings together the leaders of the governments and central bank governors from 19 countries, the European Union and the African Union to discuss economic, political and social initiatives. Its membership jointly accounts for 90% of the world GDP and 80% of the international trade.

The summit is hosted by a different state every year, with Brazil taking up this year’s rotating presidency. This means that the country will schedule the meetings, organise the agenda and set out the priority themes for the year. 

As part of this, Brazil has set three new taskforces for this year’s discussions: Creation of a Global Alliance against Hunger and Poverty; Global Mobilization against Climate Change; Initiative for Bioeconomy. The country’s priorities for the year are fighting hunger, poverty and inequality; ESG and sustainable development; and the reform of international governance.

The technical meetings and ministerial conferences will culminate with the 19th G20 Summit, which will be held on 18-19 November in Rio de Janeiro. 

Co-operatives can also participate in the Civil Society (C20) Working Groups by registering via the C20 website.

“On the website, all civil society organisations around the world, not only from the countries that make up the G20, are invited to participate, to engage in the process of creating the recommendations that we will prepare,” said Alessandra Nilo, co-founder and coordinator of the NGO Gestos and C20 Sherpa in Brazil.

The B20 will share its final recommendations to the G20 Presidency. Past B20 recommendations and outcome documents of B20 taskforces have included several references to co-operatives, including the role of co-operative models in employment generation, fostering small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and promoting entrepreneurship.