More than 100 exhibitors from 16 countries participated in the Fifth European Fair of social economy enterprises and cooperatives in the city of Plovdiv, which took place from 31 March to 3 April 2016.
Social enterprises are taking an increasingly stable place in the country’s economy, but there are still numerous opportunities, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Labour and Social Affairs Ivaylo Kalfin stated in his speech at the opening of the Exhibition. We are to launch specific financial instruments in support of social entrepreneurs, he announced before cutting the ribbon.
This initiative started very modestly five years ago, but quickly established itself; there is nowhere such type of a fair, as Bruno Roelants, Secretary General of the European Confederation of Industrial and Service Cooperatives CECOP- CICOPA Europe stressed in his address.
The political interest in the social economy sector is growing very rapidly in the European Union, said Jens Nilsson, Co-President of the Social Economy Intergroup at the European Parliament. We all support this Forum, Georges Dassis, President of the European Economic and Social Committee was categorical. For us, it is an honor that the International Fair Plovdiv is a partner and host of an event of such magnitude, said Dr. Ivan Sokolov, Chair of its Board of Directors.
The exhibition is part of the Fifth European Forum on Social Entrepreneurship, covering also an international conference “Social entrepreneurship – an Innovative Model of Social Inclusion and Employment, a round table on new legislation in this area and business meetings.
Co-organizers of the events are the European Commission, the European Economic and Social Committee, the European Confederation of Producers’ Cooperatives and Social Enterprises, the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy, the National Union of Worker Producers’ Cooperatives and 8 nongovernmental organizations.
In the period from 26 to 29 March 2015, the Fourth European Forum on Social Entrepreneurship (EFSE) will take place in Plovdiv, Bulgaria and it includes a fair, conference, workshops and roundtable
The Forum will take place again with the assistance of the European Commission, the Bulgarian Ministry of Labour and Social Policy, the Agency for Disabled People and the European Confederation of Workers’ Cooperatives, Social Cooperatives and Social and Participative Enterprises (CECOP).
At the CONFERENCE on “Entrepreneurship for Growth and Jobs”, there will be presentation on the aspects of the policy for social entrepreneurship development, after their presentation at the European Conference in November 2014 in Rome. There will be discussions on following issues: new policies concerning the social entrepreneurship and social enterprise, public private partnership, female entrepreneurship, new EU projects and other businesses.
- Mr Marko Curavic – Head of Unit, DG Enterprise and Industry, European Commission
- Mr Lazar Lazarov, Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Policy, Bulgaria,
- Mr Mincho Koralski, Executive Director, Agency for Disabled People
- Mr Luca Dal Pozzo – CECOP’s President,
- Mrs Marie Zvolska – EESC member
PRESENTATIONS TO FOLLOW:
- Regional and local cooperation – Mr Jan Olsson – EESC member, Co-president of REVES
- Entrepreneurial education and training – Mr Risto Raivio, Senior Expert, DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion, European Commission
- Social Entrepreneurship and the role of the OECD – Ms Antonella Noya, Manager of the OECD Center for entrepreneurship, SME’s and local development, France.
- Policies for social entrepreneurship development – Mr Vesselin Indzhev, Director at the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy in Bulgaria
- The role of the social enterprise and social entrepreneurship for Job Creation and Growth – ESC’s opinion – Prof. Neno Pavlov, Deputy Chairman of the Economic and Social Council in Bulgaria
- Activities to promote social entrepreneurship development in Southeast – Mrs Tanya Trayanova, Head of International Cooperation Department, the Italian Chamber of Commerce in Bulgaria.
ROUND TABLE ON SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP DEVELOPMENT
The round table involves parallel workshops on topical issues of social economy:
Workshop 1: Women’s entrepreneurship
Workshop 2: Entrepreneurial education and training
Workshop 3: Regional and local cooperation
The conclusions of the Round Table will summarise the results achieved in the workshops.
THE EFSE FAIR involves more than 70 enterprises and cooperatives in social economy from numerous EU Member States. It will take place in Pavilion 6 of the International Fair Plovdiv. The exhibitors will present complete social services and various kinds of goods.
The visitors of the Fair will have the opportunity to attend the fashion show of high quality clothes produced by social enterprises.
The main objectives of the EFSE are the development of social entrepreneurship, exchange of experience and best practices between social enterprises and cooperatives in EU Member States and strengthening their interrelations; to increase the employment of persons with disabilities; to make beneficial business contacts and market research.