ILO shares its work on cooperatives and the wider social and solidarity economy in Korea and strengthens cooperation with Korean partners

The mission members shared the ILO’s work on cooperatives and the wider social and solidarity economy and explored avenues to further strengthen collaboration with related Korean institutions, universities, and cooperative partners.

News | 26 June 2023
The mission sought to advance partnerships in the implementation of the ILO’s seven year office-wide strategy and action plan (SAP) on decent work and the social and solidarity economy 2023-29, approved by the 346th session of the Governing Body in November 2022, informed the Korean partners of the recently adopted UN GA resolution on promoting the SSE for sustainable development in April 2023. Between May 22 to June 1, 2023 the ILO team conducted meetings with Korean government institutions, presented at events of cooperative partners and in universities, and gave interviews to the media.

Ms Simel Esim attended the 60th anniversary conference of the Korean Federations of Community Credit Cooperatives (KFCC). She presented on a panel on role of financial cooperatives. She met the President of KFCC on international development cooperation.

The team discussed potential partnerships with the Korean Social Enterprise Promotion Agency (KoSEA) and the Sungkonghoe University (SKHU). A roundtable (KoSEA) and an MoU signing (SKHU) were among the steps identified. Further discussions are scheduled in July to outline future cooperation.

Meetings were also held with KOICA, NACF (National Agricultural Cooperative Federation), and NFFC (National Federation of Fisheries Cooperatives). A joint seminar was agreed upon with KOICA to enhance staff understanding of the SSE in the context of development cooperation projects.

The mission team also met with Mr. Seungwon Lee, Director General of Future Vision and Strategy Bureau, Ministry of Economy and Finance (MOEF) who will deliver congratulatory remarks for MOEF at the ILO conference on cooperative statistics.

The ILO team also met with staff of International Cooperation and Employment Statistics Divisions in Statistics Korea (SK). They thanked the SK for their participation in the Korean National Advisory Committee (NAC) of the national case study of the ILO’s cooperative statistics initiative.

Ms Esim also delivered two guest lectures at leading Korean universities answering questions on potential cooperation programs with the ILO including joint research projects/conferences, internships and visiting scholar arrangements. She also conducted two interviews with Korean media outlets, answering a range of questions on the ILO’s work on the SSE.

Ms Esim delivered a lecture for the social economy graduate students at Ewha Women’s University (EWU) on ‘Women in the Social Economy’. She also gave a lecture for the Global Social Economy Graduate students at the Hanyang University (HYU).

Ms Esim also gave interviews to two media outlets, Lifein and Social Impact News, on the ILO’s work on the social and solidarity economy. Mr Dong Il Choi also shared information on the ILO’s international conference on statistics of cooperatives on June 30th in Busan, Korea.

This mission provided the ILO with the opportunity to explore more partnerships in advancing the implementation of the ILO’s strategy and action plan on decent work and the SSE. It also served toward reinforcing the collaboration with Korean stakeholders on the SSE. ILO will hold a follow mission to Korea at the end of June - early July for two international events.