Project: Cooperative Development Program Mozambique (Taking an Innovative Cooperative Approach to Food Security and Trade)
Sector: Advocacy and Enabling Environments
In Mozambique, under the previous Cooperative Development Program (CDP II), NCBA CLUSA’s efforts led to the adoption by the Mozambican Parliament of the Association Decree Law and the new Cooperative Law in 2005 and 2009, respectively. These laws created an enabling environment for cooperatives and their smallholder members to perform business while reducing national and local barriers to registration and providing legal recognition of the new cooperative model, developed by NCBA CLUSA. During this program, NCBA CLUSA aided in the establishment and strengthened the capacity of a local trade association, Mozambican Association to Promote the Modern Cooperative (AMPCM), in 2009 to promote cooperatives in Mozambique; to train governmental representatives on the economic and social benefits of cooperatives; and to set regulations and laws that realign cooperatives to their traditional foundation.
The current CDP III program builds off the success of the original cooperative development initiative in Mozambique by continuing to increase momentum for cooperative law and regulation reform through strengthening local institutions, advocacy, and government and public education efforts. By building strong partnerships with local organizations, such as developing strategic alliances and mentored relationships with cooperatives and Cooperative Development Organizations (CDOs), NCBA CLUSA is institutionalizing local cooperative advocacy to ensure local ownership and sustainability of programmatic activities. NCBA CLUSA is also continuing its capacity building and support of AMPCM to serve as a leading voice in Mozambique in advocacy and the promotion of an enabling environment for cooperatives and trade through institutional strengthening trainings in human resource management, financial management and internal controls, organizational governance, and sustainability. Since 2009, AMPCM has led the promotion, education, and advocacy efforts on behalf of cooperatives in all sectors and the 23 AMPCM current members are serving 2,234 cooperatives and pre-cooperatives, involving about 165,000 members in cooperative businesses working in areas of agro-livestock, credit, health, production/industrial enterprises, health, and housing.
CDP When AMPCM heard the United Nations’ announcement that 2012 would be the International Year of Cooperatives, the association began organizing a calendar of events to highlight cooperative activities and achievements in the country. The annual calendar includes events promoting the collaborations among their cooperative partners in various sectors including in particular health, credit and agriculture.
On March 28th, AMPCM hosted an International Year of Cooperatives (IYC) kick-off event at the Joaquim Chissano conference center in Maputo. The association expected approximately 300 participants attending the conference, representing local cooperatives, the private sector and also the government. The association was so enthusiastic about the potential for this conference to build momentum nationally for the cooperative movement, that they invited the President of the Republic of Mozambique. While the Executive Director of AMPCM, Mr. Amancio Armando, knew that this invite was a long-shot, the President was still included in the agenda of the IYC conference.
On the day of the kick-off event, AMPCM members were overcome with excitement, when the actual attendance to the conference was well over 800 participants. The conference center was barely able to accommodate the participants as Amancio said, “We had to bring in more chairs!” To further increase the energy and enthusiasm in the room, the President of the Republic of Mozambique, Mr. Armando Guebuza was also in attendance.
President Guebuza expressed his favorable view cooperatives and their role in society saying; "Cooperatives play an important role in the development of societies and are an alternative organizational and institutional framework which aggregates the interests of individuals and guides them to solve problems identified by a collective." The conference was a celebratory event, including cultural dances and performances, highlighting the new cooperative law in Mozambique and the potential for the cooperative business model to be a vehicle for economic development and social change for the country.
"Cooperatives play an important role in the development of societies and are an alternative organizational and institutional framework which aggregates the interests of individuals and guides them to solve problems identified by a collective." President Guebuza