April 1st, 2018
Japan Co-operative Alliance (JCA) to Be Launched!
Collaborations among Japanese Co-operatives have been undertaken through the Japan Joint Committee of Co-operatives (JJC, established in 1956).
In order to further promote those collaborations, the JJC will positively be reorganized into the Japan Co-operative Alliance (JCA).

Major function

Promote inter-co-operative collaborations (promotion and support)

  • Plan and promote inter-co-operative collaboration at the national level
  • Support collaborations within prefectures and communities
  • Collaborate with government/NPOs/other organizations mainly in implementing activities for protecting people’s livelihoods, jobs and communities
  • Collaborate with international organizations such as the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA); disseminate information across the international community
  • Support the establishment of outside-the-box unconventional co-operatives

Make policy proposals; engage in public relations activities (dissemination of messages)

  • Make policy proposals and engage in negotiations to protect members’ livelihoods, jobs and local communities
  • Disseminate information and engage in public relations activities to share with society what co-operatives do, help people gain a better understanding of co-operatives, and encourage participation

Provide education and conduct research (analysis, sharing and proliferation)

  • Provide education and training to co-operative members and co-operative managers and staff members
  • Provide education to the general public by sponsoring university courses and outreach programs for compulsory education
  • Conduct surveys/research and maintain databases on and in relation to co-operatives

Background

As economies globalize, issues such as widening disparities in wealth and social isolations are common issue across the world.

As co-operatives, which are autonomous associations of persons to support one another, we can contribute to Japanese society by tackling those issues to engage in "creating better life and work in sustainable local communities".

In Japan, co-operatives operate in diverse areas including agriculture, forestry and fisheries, retail, finance, mutual aid, employment creation, welfare, medical care, travel, and housing, with a total membership of 65 million. Through the cross-industry collaborations, we have also contributed society as a whole with a lot of activities such as nature conservation activities, job creation, and providing places for children.

The Japan Co-operative Alliance (JCA) will consolidate capacities of co-operatives across Japan and facilitate collaborations between co-operatives with the aim of solving social issues.

We invite you to follow our progress to see what the JCA can achieve.

Message

Dear Members of the Japan Joint Committee of Co-operatives,

It is my great pleasure to congratulate you on the establishment of the apex organization called "Japan Co-operative Alliance" (JCA). You took an important step by reorganizing the Japan Joint Committee of Co-operatives into such an organization. This constitutes a truly historic occasion for the Japanese cooperative movement.

Now is also a significant moment at the United Nations. The Member States of the United Nations have now embarked on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development for all countries and everyone. The United Nations recognizes that cooperative enterprises make significant contributions towards achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in a sustainable, inclusive and responsible way.

Japanese cooperatives have a long history of engagement in communities, by, for instance, creating decent work opportunities for people in disadvantaged positions, re-building communities in the aftermath of natural disasters, improving resilience of people and communities, and promoting the spirit of solidarity and cooperation. I am confident that the formation of the JCA will help further strengthen cooperatives and contribute to the achievement of the SDGs in Japan.

I congratulate you and salute you for your important contribution to social and economic development.

We look forward to continued cooperation with Japanese cooperatives through the new JCA in the future.

Ms. Daniela Bas
Director, Division for Social Policy and Development
Department of Economic and Social Affairs,
United Nations Secretariat

Dear Colleagues,

On behalf of the International Co-operative Alliance, we welcome the birth of the Japan Co-operative Alliance – JCA.

Apex organisations are privileged interlocutors with national and local institutions, likewise with the media and other authorities. They play a very important role in promoting the co-operative approach for economic growth, for reducing social inequality and for sustainable development.

We believe that Apex organisations are the best way of showing how co-operative sectors can leverage their complementarity nature to unite their voices.

Thanks to the interactions and knowledge sharing between different co-operative sectors, Apex organisations have a global vision of the national co-operative movement. Not only are they required to identify and to anticipate challenges and issues, they must also address them in establishing commitments and specific strategies.

In addition, a new co-operative organisation also creates new ambitions, visions and strengths. It forces co-operators to assume new roles, to come up with bold, innovative, pioneering ideas always oriented to serve the members and the common interest.

The creation of a new co-operative organisation is an exceptional adventure. Be sure that the International Co-operative Alliance will support you in this extraordinary challenge.

We congratulate all the parties of JCA and wish them good luck in this major undertaking.

Ariel Guarco
President,
International Co-operative Alliance
Charles Gould
Director General,
International Co-operative Alliance

Congratulatory Message on the Japan Co-operative Alliance Inauguration

On behalf of the ILO and its Office for Japan,I would like to convey my sincere congratulations on the inauguration of the Japan Co-operative Alliance (JCA).

Today,although the global economic perspectives are turning positive,decent work deficits remain widespread,and persistent poverty and inequality still continue. In addition,the world of work is undergoing major changes because of numerous emerging forces such as rapid technological innovations,drastic demographic changes,growing impact of climate change and accelerating globalization,to name a few.

Since its creation in 1919,the ILO has recognized the relevance of cooperatives as people-centred,principles driven,member owned in pursuing its mandate to achieve social justice and full employment. Facing the recent challenges and changes,in close collaboration with various partners including cooperatives,the ILO is tackling seven centennial initiatives such as "Future of Work" to mark its 100-year anniversary in 2019. In this process,the ILO is indeed rediscovering the importance and potential of cooperatives as a viable alternative to complement and support existing business model toward achieving "Decent Work for All" which is the critical component of Goal8 of SDGs as well as realising social inclusion.

Through the joint ILO-JCCU African Cooperative Leaders Study Tour Programme,ILO has been collaborating broadly with various players of the Japanese cooperative movement since 2010,and it will be our great pleasure and honour to also work closely with the newly established JCA.

We look forward to cooperating with JCA to realise social justice,decent work for all as well as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for many years to come.

Akiko Taguchi
Director, ILO Office for Japan

'what if' video

The JJC is proud to support the ICA's global awareness campaign which started at the 2015 global conference in Antalya, Turkey and was delighted to develop the Japanese version of the Co-operative advert. Click on the link to view the video.

This video was made as a part of the ICA "Global Campaign".

Other country videos