Principles of European Co-op Law to June 2015

Principles of European Co-operative Law (PECOL)

This project was launched in 2011 by the Study Group on European Co-operative Law (SGECOL) of which I am a full member.

PECOL was published as a full draft in May 2015 see: PECOL-May-2015 . It’s debated at a meeting of EURICSE and the EU Economic and Social Committee in Brussels on 09.06.2015.

Here is a description of the project from the SGECOL web pages:

“Principles of European Cooperative Law (PECOL)

PECOL are scholarly “ideal” principles of cooperative law based on scholarly analysis. They will take the form of legal provisions accompanied by explanatory comments, and be developed on the basis of the existing cooperative law in Europe, focusing in particular on six European jurisdictions (Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, UK).

PECOL will not simply summarize and describe the common core of European national cooperative laws. Going beyond that, the project will provide the main general provisions through which – in the authors’ view – cooperative law should be formulated to provide cooperatives with a definite and distinct legal identity vis-a-vis other business organisations.

The PECOL project does not serve a single specific purpose, still less is its goal to impose harmonization on national cooperative laws. PECOL will be a scientific and scholarly work, capable of serving many potential functions, depending on the users’ particular needs.

Working Method: According to the number of relevant areas of interest for the cooperative identity as identified by the drafters, PECOL will be divided into five chapters, which are:

  1. cooperative social object;

  2. cooperative governance;

  3. cooperative financial structure;

  4. cooperative control;

  5. cooperation among cooperatives.

Each chapter will be divided into a number of sections depending on the number of points that comprise the area of interest.

Interim reports and the draft PECOL will circulate outside SGECOL and particularly among cooperative professionals and representative organizations, as well as non-legal experts, notably economists.

PECOL was published as a full draft in May 2015 see: PECOL-May-2015 .

To learn more see : EURICSE WP 24|12 New Study Group on European Co-operative Law


UK National Reports by Ian Snaith

PECOL Chapter 1 Co-operative Identity

Here is my UK national report for PECOL Chapter 1 Co-operative Identity: PECOL Chapter 1 Snaith UK 05.12

PECOL Chapter 2 Co-operative Governance: UK Draft Report April 2013

My UK report on Governance for the PECOL meeting in Trento from 7th to 11th April 2013 is here. Comments are welcome.

As the co-ordinator for the Governance Chapter, I  prepared a draft of the Principles for our October 2013 meeting in Brussels where it was discussed at length. In March 2014 at our meeting in Valencia, we finalised the Principles on Governance and also agreed the Principles on Financial Structure. Early in 2015, I completed the Chapter 2 commentary as it now appears in the draft published in May 2015 PECOL-May-2015.

The project moved on to look at Co-operative Control (audit, both financial and co-operative) and Co-operation among co-operatives having received national reports on those subjects later in 2014 for a meeting in late October/November.

PECOL Chapter 3 Co-operative Financial Structure

My UK report on Co-op Financial Structure for the PECOL meeting in Brussels from 20th to 23rd October 2013. Comments are welcome.

PECOL Chapter 4 Co-operative Control

Here is my UK Report on Co-operative (External) Control. Again, comments are welcome.

PECOL Chapter 5 Co-operation Among Co-operatives

Here is the UK Report on Chapter 5: PECOL 5 UK Report 10.14FIN.

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