Speaking at the National Cooperative Conference organized by IFFCO and NCUI, ICA members of India:

“It is a real honor for me to be able to be in your country again.

After many months of isolation, uncertainty and pain caused by the coronavirus pandemic, meeting again is a cause of deep joy.

I am also very pleased to be able to share this important day with you.

The diversity of sectors and regions that is represented in this act speaks of the enormous power of Indian cooperativism.

The work you carry out in areas such as agriculture, housing, finance and many other services is evident in the profound contributions made by cooperatives in terms of food security and poverty alleviation, among other objectives involved in the global Sustainable Development agenda.

Let me also emphasize that this power of the cooperative model also yields excellent results linked to the impact of the sector in the public sphere.

In this sense, I want to express to you today the deep satisfaction that I felt as ICA president when I learned a few weeks ago that the Prime Minister, His Excellency Shri Narendra Modi, had decided to create the Ministry of Cooperation, for the first time since the independence of the India.

It fills me with pride and I find it extremely hopeful to know that this new Ministry has in its hands the opportunity to strengthen the cooperative model together with you and thus contribute to the prosperity of your country.

If I may share my humble opinion, I believe that in a country like India this is the most appropriate time for a milestone of this magnitude to take place.

And I am sure that it will consolidate the rich trajectory of the Indian cooperative movement in the face of the presidency that this country is going to assume in the G20, next year.

Finally, I want to invite you to be part of the discussions that we will be developing at the Thirty-third World Cooperative Congress, which will be held in Seoul, Republic of Korea, from December 1-3.

Once again, I thank you for the hospitality with which you always receive me, I wish this to be an excellent national conference and I leave you my cooperative greeting.”