Uruguayan government backs co-ops in tourism sector

A multi-agency backed initiative encourages co-op development in new sectors and small communities

A co-op development programme in Uruguay has added two tourism enterprises to the latest projects it has chosen to support – as part of its remit to develop co-ops in sectors not traditionally associated with the business model.

The Incubacoop initiative is backed by the Uruguayan Ministry of Industry, Energy and Mining, the National Institute of Co-operativism (Inacoop) and the Uruguayan Confederation of Co-operatives (Cudecoop) to support the creation of co-ops in strategic sectors and generate enterprise in specialist areas.

In its latest funding round, six projects will be supported, with two of them in tourism – to encourage co-op development in this sector, specifically in small towns.

National director of tourism, Carlos Fagetti, said the two projects are situated in the towns of Veinticinco de Mayo and Cardal, in Uruguay’s Florida region. They’re part of the ‘Milk Route’ in picturesque areas where dairy producers are opening up their farms to tourists.

The enterprises will benefit from technical support in promoting and marketing their products.

Mr Fagetti said that co-operative marketing will benefit small communities such as these and helps boost the local economy by creating a tourism industry that offers restaurants, hotels and other services.