Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel supports co-op model

26 Jun 2012

Germany's Chancellor Angela Merkel has praised co-operatives as a business model for the future.
 
During the official ceremony to mark the International Year of Co-operatives at DZ BANK in Pariser Platz, Berlin, Ms Merkel said: "Co-operatives are examples of how to integrate economic, social and environmental goals.”
 
Ms Merkel was joined by Uwe Froehlich, the President of BVR, the federal association of German co-operative banks. He also explained the importance of co-operatives in his opening speech at the event.
 
He said that in an environment where citizens want to get involved in political and economic decision-making; co-operatives can be used to address issues without using government assistance and civic action.
 
The event had 600 guests from business, media, and politics, as well as numerous board members of co-operative financial groups.
 
BVR has over 16 million members and 30 million customers; they are a major force in the German economy. In Germany alone there are currently 7,600 cooperatives with a total of 20 million members.
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