Building Europe on a Social Economy

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16.01.2014

Building Europe on a Social Economy

The Espriu Foundation participated in the 11th Assembly of the Spanish Social Economy Enterprise Confederation (CEPES) which was held in Madrid on 20 June. This event gathered social economy representatives from six European countries to promote this means of doing business and to demonstrate with data that there is an economic alternative to the current situation the social economy and its businesses are unavoidably facing.

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In addition to the Chairman of CEPES, Juan Antonio Pedreño, the Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Economy and Finance responsible for the Social Economy of France, Benoit Hamon, the Secretary of State for Employment, Engracia Hidalgo, and the Chairman of the European Union Regions Committee, Ramón Luis Valcárcel, also participated. Representing the Espriu Foundation were CEO Dr José Carlos Guisado and Board member Dr Gerard Martí.

It was proven at the event that the social economy continues to demonstrate a commitment to people, creativity and job and enterprise maintenance and increased competiveness and innovation. Emphasis was also placed on the essential role of the social economy in growth and social cohesion policies.

According to data provided by CEPES, the entire Spanish social economy has maintained employment at 2.3 million direct and indirect jobs in the last five years and has created newly 20,000 new enterprises and 150,000 new jobs during the crisis where the general trends has been job destruction. Official data indicate that job destruction in the social economy is 6.5 points below that of other business models. This differential exceeds 12 points in the specific context of co-operatives. The Chairman of CEPES stated that “the Social Economy is helping to build Spain as far as economic growth and jobs. These companies wish to stop being temporary solutions and become part of the structural reforms needed in the Spanish production model”.

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