*ICA and Development* Head Office The ICA's Development Section is responsible for overall planning and management of the ICA development programme, for initiating special activities in the field of human resource development (HRD), and for coordinating research and new initiatives. In 1989 the development and administrative functions of head office were combined under the Deputy Director, Claes Thorselius. The HRD activities have been coordinated by two officers during this period, J.M. Rana and Jan-Eirik Imbsen. Support is provided by other head office departments, including personnel, communications, documentation, and UN relations. The objective of ICA's development programme is to support the growth of independent, economically-viable, democratic co-operative organisations in all sectors. It has four main programme priorities: to influence government policy and legislation so that co-operatives are allowed to develop as independent organisations; to strengthen national apex and sectoral co-operative structures; to improve the quality and quantity of assistance provided for co-operative development; and to implement pro=16grammes in the priority areas of human resource development and co-operative trade. ICA's direct financial contribution to its development programme is divided between the salaries and associated costs of head office staff and those of the Regional Directors, who are the only permanent ICA employees in the regions. This annual contribution of less than CHF 500,000 has led to a total development budget in 1992 of CHF 8.2 million, including contributions by some 20 co-operative and international development agencies as well as regional members. These figures have grown steadily every year since ICA's new development programme was initiated in 1986. In addition to regular planning and administrative support, head office has coordinated several special programmes since 1988. The most visible have been the establishment of two-year "project offices" in Costa Rica in 1987 and in Argentina in 1990 designed to provide support to co-operatives in the region and to assess the potential and need for full ICA Regional Offices. In 1990 the Costa Rica office became the Regional Office for Central America and the Caribbean. The future of the Argentine office is to be determined during a regional consultation in 1992. In 1991 ICA coordinated an analysis of the co-operative potential in newly-independent Namibia. This report was followed by a joint ICA-ILO-SCC policy dialogue with Namibian government and co-operative leaders as input into a new national co-operative policy. Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific A total of 58 national co-operative organisations from 24 countries, representing over 400 million individual members, now participate in the work of the Regional Office. Since 1988 new members have come from Afghanistan, Iran, Fiji, and Vietnam. The Regional Office's policy work has been implemented through the preparation and organising of regional conferences of co-operative ministers. The first was held in Australia in 1990 and the second in Indonesia in 1992. Since 1988 significant improvements in co-operative policy and legislation have been introduced in several countries of the region. The office carries out its technical work through six on-going projects: Development Planning, Agriculture, Consumer, HRD, Trade, and Agricultural Management Training. In 1991 a new five-year training programme for women involved in agricultural co-operatives was begun. The major external funding supporters of these activities have been Sweden (SCC), Japan (CUAC, JCCU, MAFF), Australia (AAC), and Canada (CCA). A new focus of activity for the region is the environment. In 1990 the Regional Office published an information brochure on the role co-operatives can play in protecting the environment, and in 1992 it began a regional study designed to develop national and regional strategies for environmental enhancement. Chinese co-operatives have shared their experience in waste resource recycling with other ICA members by means of a regional workshop and direct technical assistance. Since 1988 the office has strengthened its information capacity. Its library has been computerised and updated, a data bank has been established, and the office's quarterly journal has been supplemented by newsletters on consumer and HRD issues. In November 1988 the ICA Domus Trust was created in the memory of Dr. Mauritz Bonow, former ICA President. Ownership of the ICA's Regional Office building in New Delhi was transferred to the trust from its previous British-registered owner, ICA Domus Limited. In addition to its main office in New Delhi, the Regional Office has established project offices in Australia and Singapore to coordinate and implement specific development and trade activities. Regional Office for East, Central and Southern Africa Since 1984 the Regional Office has been organising conferences of Co-operative Ministers every three years in order to promote greater strength and independence for co-operatives in the region. The 1990 conference, held in Nairobi, reflected a continued desire on the part of co-operative and government leaders to move towards the goal of self-reliance. In several countries co-operatives have taken over activities previously carried out by government or by parastatals, although often without sufficient resources. Since the 1988 Congress the Regional Office lost one member country, Somalia, due to internal problems, reducing its membership to eight countries. However, in 1991 the Regional Council agreed that national commercial co-operative organizations should be admitted as members in future, in addition to multi-sectoral apex organizations, as is the practice in other regions. During the last four years the Regional Office introduced three new programmes in the areas of banking, trade, and women, in addition to its on-going activities in the fields of research and consultancy, agriculture, human resource development, and insurance. The latter project, which is managed from a project office in a member country, moved from Zambia to Botswana. The office's activities are supported by Sweden (SCC), the Netherlands (Rabobank Foundation), Australia (CDL), and the Co-operative Insurance Development Bureau. Recently-terminated support from Canada (CCA) and the Netherlands (HIVOS) is being renegotiated. In 1991 Vincent Lubasi, former Executive Secretary of the African Confederation of Savings and Credit Associations, was appointed Regional Director. Regional Office for West Africa Since 1988 the Regional Office has developed a new work programme centred on four priorities: legislative review and government policy, promotion of national co-operative or ganisations, education and training, and promotion of economic exchanges. The Regional Office's membership declined by one country during this period with the expulsion of Mauritania for non-payment of dues. It now serves members in 15 countries. The results of a regional legislative consultation, held in Conakry in 1991, were published by ILO and widely circulated in the region. The office has provided support to new national organisations in Cape Verde, Cote d'Ivoire, and Mali. In 1990 the Regional Council agreed to amend the office's by-laws to remove the membership of government representatives on the council, which had previously been a provisional body. The Regional Office's major education and training programme, funded by Norway (NRD), reached its final year in 1992. A new multi-year programme is being negotiated. The office also receives support for activities from Canada (SOCODEVI), Germany (DSE), France (Credit Cooperatif), and from two ICA specialised organisations (CICOPA and ICIF-CIDB). In 1989 Ada Kibora was appointed Regional Director. Regional Office for Central America and the Caribbean The newest ICA Regional Office was officially opened in 1990, although it had functioned previously as a project office. Mr. Juan Diego Pacheco was appointed Regional Director. The office is carrying out activities in the fields of women's integration, human rights, research, and strategic planning with funding support from Norway (NRD), Sweden (SCC and Diakonia), Canada (CCA and SOCODEVI), Australia (CDL), and FAO. In view of the existence of several important regional co-operative organisations, the Regional Office has signed agreements with OCA, CCC-CA, and COLAC in order to define and clarify respective fields of responsibility and action. During this intial stage of its activity the office is collaborating with co-operative movements in Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia, Ecuador, Dominican Republic, and Puerto Rico. Future Directions As the ICA development programme is based on three-year workplans, the most recent having been approved in 1991, no major changes in direction are anticipated in coming years. A continued priority will be increased contributions to the programme from members in the region, as well as a further diversification of external funding sources. As the programme continues to grow, the capacity of head office to provide administrative and backstopping support becomes increasingly important. Accordingly, Mr. Arsenio Invernizzi, former director of Italy's Cooptecnital and currently director of the ICA office in Buenos Aires, will join head office in late 1992. As the increased integration of women in co-operatives is a priority in all Regional Offices, the ICA will develop global and regional gender strategies in future as the basis for its expanded activities in this field. The Regional Offices will seek to strengthen their collaboration with members of the ICA Women's Committee and with INCOTEC in this regard. The implementation of the new ICA structure after the Tokyo Congress will have special implications for those continents in which there is already more than one Regional Office. Various techniques for collaboration between offices will be examined.