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The 15th ICA-AP Regional Assembly was held in Seoul, Republic of Korea on 30 November 2021 in a hybrid manner in conjunction with the World Cooperative Congress. The assembly discussed the administrative issues and conducted elections of the new ICA-AP Regional Board. The hybrid assembly was attended by more than 130 participants from 20 countries – Australia, Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Jordon, Korea, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Nepal, New Zealand, Palestine, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam.


Mr. Li Chunsheng, President of ICA-AP, Chaired the assembly and extended a warm welcome to all the members. He invited, Mr. Sung-Hee Lee, Chairman, National Agricultural Cooperative Federation (NACF), Korea to give his welcome remarks. Mr. Balasubramanian Iyer, Regional Director, ICA-AP presented the ICA-AP 60th anniversary souvenir to Mr. Lee.


Mr. Li invited ICA President, Mr. Ariel Guarco to make his opening address. President Guarco welcomed the ICA-AP delegates to the World Cooperative Congress, highlighting the region’s importance, he said, “I am convinced that your region will continue to be an important pillar for the global cooperative movement.”


Mr. Li asked for the approval of the agenda which was unanimously approved. The minutes of the 14th ICA-AP Regional Assembly held online on 24 February 2021 were confirmed by the members.


Mr. Li asked for comments on the minutes of the two Regional Board meetings held since the last Regional Assembly, which were sent in advance to all the members. There were no comments made by the members and the minutes were approved.


Mr. Balasubramanian Iyer, Regional Director, ICA-AP highlighted the key activities carried out since the last Regional Assembly in February 2021 -  the ICA-MAFF Japan Training Project; ICA-EU Project Regional Report; webinars and seminars; and meeting of ICA President Ariel Guarco with India’ new Minister of Cooperation, Sh. Amit Shah. He also presented the ICA-AP financial report of 2020 and the membership situation. He noted that four new members have joined in 2021, which are


  • Centre for Cooperatives and Livelihoods – Autonomous (CCL)  Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA), INDIA
  • The Tamil Nadu Small Tea Growers ICTFs Federation Ltd. (INDCOSERVE), INDIA 
  • Educational Cooperative Union of Limited Liability, JORDAN 
  • Network Consolidated Cooperative Bank (NCCB), PHILIPPINES 
  • There are now 112 members from 31 countries in the Asia and Pacific region.


Mr. Iyer informed the assembly about the elections schedule, exception requests approval by the board, and the elections committee. He demonstrated the electronic voting system to all the members and answered their queries.


ICA-AP Committee Meetings and Elections


ICA-AP regional and thematic committees held their office bearers’ meetings and elections on 28 and 29 November and they presented brief updates during the assembly.


  1. Consumer Committee

The ICA-AP Consumer Committee held an online meeting which was attended by 12 members from seven organizations in six countries, including observers. It approved the activity reports for FY2020 and FY2021,  the proposed activity plan and budget for FY2022, and proposed a revision of the Committee Constitution regarding the term of office-bearers. Since the quorum was not formed, the Constitution couldn’t be revised.


The Committee elected Mr. Akihiro Yamakoshi of Japanese Consumer’s Co-operative Union (JCCU) as the next chairperson in place of Mr. Haruyoshi Amano of JCCU who is retiring. Dr. Mohd Azlan Yahya of Malaysian National Co-operative Movement (ANGKASA) and Ms. Jeong-Hee Kim of iCOOP KOREA  were elected as vice-chairpersons.


  1. Credit and Banking Committee

The 15th meeting of the ICA-AP Credit and Banking Committee was held in hybrid mode. It was attended by seven members from five countries and four observers from other member organizations. Mr. Bhima Subrahmayam, President, International Cooperative Banking Association (ICBA) also participated in the meeting. The members from Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia, Korea and India presented brief reports on the status of the cooperative credit & banking sector. Mr. Kukbhushan Kukreja, Committee Secretary, informed that the regular activities could not be undertaken due to the pandemic, The committee also discussed the activity plan for 2022.


The committee elected Mr. Ravindran, Managing Director, National Cooperative Agriculture & Rural Development Banks’ Federation Ltd. (NAFCARD) as the Chairman. Dato' Che Mohd Shukree Che Isa, Vice President of ANGKASA and Mr. Raul Calayan Jr. representing Network Consolidated Cooperative Bank (NCCB), Philippines were chosen as the two Vice-Chairpersons.


  1. Education Committee

The ICA-AP Education Committee held its 13th annual meeting to review activities undertaken in 2021. These included four online activities - a short film competition on cooperatives for youth, two webinars on the theme ‘Opportunities for Cooperatives in Educational Institutions Post COVID-19’, and a global workshop on the theme ‘Building and Strengthening Cooperative Identity among Youth through Cooperatives in Educational Institutions’.

The committee elected new Office Bearers - Dr. Mohd. Azlan Yahya as Chairperson representing ANGKASA, Malaysia, Mr. Ichiro Nakamori as Vice-Chairperson representing the National Federation of University Cooperative Associations (NFUCA), Japan and Dr. Mallika Kumar as Vice-Chairperson representing the National Cooperative Union of India (NCUI), India.  The term of the newly appointed Office-Bearers will be two years starting 2022 and they will convene early next year to firm up the activity plan for 2022.

  1. Research Committee

The 7th meeting of the ICA-AP Research Committee was held online. It was attended by 16 members from seven countries including observers. The meeting led by the Chairperson, Prof. Akira Kurimoto discussed its activities report including the two Cooperative Research Conferences held in 2019 and 2020 and the release of two research volumes featuring cooperatives from the Asia-Pacific region – (1) Waking the Asian Pacific Co-operative Potential by Elsevier; and (2) Cooperatives and Social Innovation by Springer.


The committee unanimously elected its new office-bearers - Dr. Yashvantha Dongre as Chairperson, affiliated to the University of Mysore, India and nominated by ICA member ULCCS; Dr. Sidsel Grimstad as Vice-Chairperson, affiliated to the University of Newcastle, Australia and nominated by ICA member BCCM; and Dr. Eunju Choi as Vice-Chairperson, affiliated to the iCOOP Co-operative Institute, South Korea and nominated by ICA member iCOOP.


  1. Trade and Business Committee

The meeting was held to discuss the matters of trade and business within the region. It was led by the Committee Chair and President of ANGKASA, Dato' Dr. Abdul Fattah Haji Abdullah who was present online and attended by the Regional Director of ICA-AP, Mr. Balasubramanian Iyer, ANGKASA Board Member cum ICA Global Board Member, Dato ’Haji Kamarudin Ismail and ANGKASA Group Chief Executive Officer, Haji Nasir Khan Yahaya who were physically present. Ms. Liu Ting, Deputy Director of the International Cooperation Department at the All-China Federation of Supply and Marketing Co-operatives (ACFSMC) and Ms. Wan Azwati Wan Mohamed, Secretary of the ICA-AP Trade and Business Committee also joined the meeting.


The members proposed several programs including roundtable discussions between committee members, webinars focusing on strengthening trade & business between cooperatives in the Asia Pacific region, a virtual trade fair and online business matching. Chairperson, Dato' Dr. Abdul Fattah Abdullah suggested that the committee should be involved in the ASEAN Cooperative Organization's (ACO) efforts to identify at least 10 products and services by cooperatives of ASEAN countries that have the potential to be exported as common market products to the global level.



  1. Youth Committee

The 14th Annual Meeting of the ICYC was held to discuss activities undertaken by the committee and plan for the upcoming year. It was attended by seven members from three countries. Mr. Sebastien Chaillou, President of, ICA Youth Network, spoke about the importance of youth in the cooperative movement and urged members to be a part of the Global Youth Network.  Ms. Ana Aguirre, Vice-Chairperson, ICA Youth Network and Ms. Emily, member-ICA Youth Network summarised the youth toolkit launched at the ICA Global Youth Workshop in Chuncheon, Republic of Korea. It features case studies of successful youth cooperatives.


The acting Chairperson, Mr. Alireza Banaeifar opened the meeting with his remarks and presented a brief activities report. The committee held its election for office bearers. Mr. Alireza Banaeifar from Iran Chamber of Cooperatives, Iran was elected as the new Chairperson. Ms. Dulce Saquilayan Bustamante, Union of Legitimate Service Contracting Cooperatives (ULSCC), Philippines and Mr. Cecilce Jay Lambo Masanegra, AIMCooP, Philippines are the new Vice-Chairpersons.