Tripartite conference in Tunisia on the role of Social and Solidarity Economy as a bridge to the formal economy

Actualité | 15 décembre 2017
As acknowledged by ILO’s Transition from the Informal to the Formal Economy Recommendation, 2015 (No. 204), cooperatives and other social and solidarity economy (SSE) units have a key role to play in the transition from the informal to the formal economy. There are many examples from around the world showing how SSE organizations can build a bridge from the informal to the formal economy and thus addressing pressing decent work deficits. It is with this belief and vision that the ILO organized between 4 and 5 December in Hammamet, Tunisia, an International Conference on ”the Role of the Social and Solidarity Economy as a bridge to the formal economy, a pathway for decent jobs”.

About 60 participants attended the conference, including tripartite delegations from Brazil, Cameroon, India, Kenya, Mali, Mauritania, Senegal, South Africa, Viet Nam, and Zimbabwe.

The conference, which was approved by the ILO Governing Body, aimed at sharing experiences in the field of formalization of the informal economy by the SSE, and discussing an ILO strategy on the role of SSE in formalizing the informal economy, among others. Participants welcomed examples of good practices that were shared by speakers related to topics including gender and formalization of enterprises and jobs, the role of social partners, local development, social protection, as well as social innovation.

The conference validated with a few amendments the strategy proposed by the ILO to support the formalization of the informal economy by the SSE. Findings and recommendations from the event will lead to the formulation of a technical cooperation project for the formalization of the informal economy through SSE in Maghreb countries.

The conference was organized as part of the Promotion of Organizations and Mechanisms of Social and Solidarity Economy (PROMESS) project jointly with the ILO’s Cooperatives Unit and the ILO Country Office for Maghreb countries and with the support of the ILO Regional Office for Africa.

Group photo of participants