ACDI/VOCA to Present Perspectives on Sustainable Economic Growth

WASHINGTON, June 17, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- ACDI/VOCA will host a learning event Tuesday, June 18, featuring experiences of former aid recipients who will discuss sustainable economic growth in emerging economies. The event is titled "Moving Forward Together, Sustainable Economic Change: Lessons from Ecuador, Ethiopia, India, Kyrgyzstan." It will be webcast at starting at 9 a.m.

Leaders from the four countries will discuss factors that led to sustainable growth in their respective institutions. The speakers will reflect on adaptability and resiliency through market information and strategic thinking; how cooperatives offer economies of scale that can be key to market leverage and access; and how donor-funded development programs can smooth market growth pains, creating opportunity for further progress.

The four successful and locally led organizations represented at the event grew out of ACDI/VOCA development projects funded by different donors, including USDA and USAID. The groups have thrived and catalyzed economic growth long after the original initiatives ended.

Leaders of Successful Local Institutions to Participate

ACDI/VOCA board member Deborah Atwood, executive director of Meridian's AGree: Transforming Food and Ag Policy initiative, will moderate the discussion.

Participants will include: Tadesse Meskela, founder and general manager of the Oromia Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union of Ethiopia, the largest organic coffee exporter in the world; Gulnara Shamshieva, CEO of Microfinance Bank Bai-Tushum & Partners, one of Kyrgyzstan's three largest microfinance institutions; Carlos Emilio Jara Miranda, the former president and current member of the Inés María Association, a cocoa farmers' association in Ecuador that sells to multiple global buyers, including Nestlé; and Dr. G. N. Saxena, director of cooperative development and board member of the Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Ltd. (IFFCO), Asia's largest fertilizer producer.

ACDI/VOCA Celebrates 50 Years of Empowering People to Succeed in the Global Economy

ACDI/VOCA is an international development organization with 50 years of experience expanding opportunities worldwide. The event leads off ACDI/VOCA's 50th anniversary activities. Hundreds of partners, expert volunteers, leaders and staff from around the world will gather to mark the anniversary with activities centered on learning, reflecting on a half-century of development work and creating new platforms to share knowledge.

ACDI/VOCA fosters broad-based economic growth, raises living standards and creates vibrant communities. Based in Washington, D.C., ACDI/VOCA has worked in 146 countries since 1963. Its practice areas are agribusiness, food security, enterprise development, financial services and community development.

CONTACT: Anja Tranovich ACDI/VOCA 202-469-6095