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The International Committee for the Promotion
of Chinese Industrial Cooperatives
(Gung Ho-ICCIC)


Welcome to ICCIC


As China emerges as a world leader, people across the nation are forming cooperative enterprises to ensure that all can share in our new prosperity.


The International Committee for the Promotion of Chinese Industrial Co-operatives (ICCIC) has been helping people establish member owned and operated co-operative enterprises since 1939. That is the year a group of international friends and Chinese patriots organized laid-off workers and refugees displaced by the Japanese invasion to set up manufacturing cooperatives to support the defense against the Japanese. They called it Gung Ho, meaning working together. Since that time, men and women within China and beyond have dedicated their lives to helping China’s poor move out of poverty by working together.


Today, ICCIC continues to equip citizens, leaders, educators and policy makers to form cooperative enterprises that provide members with the financial and social benefits they need. 


Our Vision


To build a harmonious society by promoting the development of cooperative enterprises as a tool for narrowing the gap between rich and poor and establishing social and economic fairness for all. 


What we do


Promote the seven international principles of cooperation.


Develop cooperative organizations of all types.


Promote legislation and policies which enable cooperatives to thrive.


Work with government leaders to establish a development path for cooperatives which best suits China’s needs.


Educate and train cooperative members, organizers and promoters.


Support research activities which make cooperatives more effective in China.


Establish linkages, exchanges and cooperation among foreign and Chinese cooperatives.


Help cooperatives to improve China’s social welfare by such means as eliminating poverty, creating equal opportunities and benefits for women and men, protecting the environment, and aiding in post-disaster relief and reconstruction.

China’s Cooperatives:

Building a better future for all


In cities and villages, in factories and farms, groups of like-minded Chinese are pooling their time, talents and resources to move out of poverty. The cooperative enterprises they form help the many achieve what the few alone cannot. By combining their goods and services, members are able to sell in volumes that enabling them to earn higher prices and recapture profits previously lost to middlemen. Members have a say in how the cooperative works. They share in the profits and grow their enterprises to create jobs and opportunities.


After resuming activity in 1987, the ICCIC founded three cooperative pilot zones in Shandan (Gansu), Honghu (Hubei) and Longkou and Penglai (Shandong), and a number of village-level industrial cooperatives in over 20 cities and counties. Since then, the ICCIC has learned much about the roles cooperative enterprise can play in the economic and social development of China’s diverse society. Lessons learned along the way have sharpened the ICCIC’s co-operative development tools and approaches.


Over the years, ICCIC has honed its capacity to organize strong and effective cooperative enterprises. Its services include:



Promoting cooperatives in China.


ICCIC’s mission is to bring benefits and opportunities to communities in need.  Telling people what cooperatives are and how they can be used to turn poverty into prosperity underpins much of the ICCIC’s work. The ICCIC promotes the idea of cooperative organization through presentations, seminars, courses, and publications such as its quarterly Newsletter, and its website.


Establishing cooperative organizations of all types.


Cooperatives can provide virtually any product or service. The ICCIC works with governments, NGOs and charitable foundations to help communities establish and grow a wide range of cooperative enterprises. Concern for the environment, support for gender equality, literacy and financial numeracy underpin the ICCIC’s approach to cooperative development.


Cooperatives open opportunities for women. The ICCIC has worked with local women’s associations in the Baoding area of Hebei Province to form a number of cooperatives for rural women and laid-off urban women. ICCIC has organized a number of pig feeding cooperatives, production purchase cooperatives and credit cooperatives in Lishu County (Jilin). More than ten women’s handicraft cooperatives have been formed to employ laid-off and migrant. In 2007, at the invitation of a French NGO called For Women in Ningxia, the ICCIC provided cooperative training and guidance for women in Magaozhuang Town, Tongxin County, (Ningxia Autonomous Region).


Cooperatives play a key role in preserving our natural environment. In 2008, the ICCIC provided cooperative training and consultation for the Sino-Europan Natural Forest Management Project in Baoxing and Pingwu (Sichuan) and Yongshun (Hunan).


Cooperatives are there in times of emergency. Cooperative members were also affected by the 2008 earthquake in Sichuan.  The ICCIC was there to support recovery efforts in the Wenchuan area. Aided by the New Zealand China Friendship Society, the ICCIC helped the Pengzhou Danjingshan Tea Planting Cooperative in Pengzhou City rebuild over 1000 meters of irrigation channels in Huang village to irrigate 400 mu of farmland. The ICCIC helped poor households in Danjishan Village purchase tea plants to increase their production and income.


Promoting enabling legislation and policies


Cooperatives thrive when supported by enabling legislation and policies. The ICCIC worked for many years to help policy makers and researchers draft national legislation to enable the registration and development of farmer cooperatives across China. On October 31, 2006, the 24th Sessions of the 10th National People’s Congress passed the Farmer Professional Cooperatives Law, 2006.


Educating and training


Over the years, the ICCIC has delivered hundreds of co-operative training events to cooperative members, organizers and promoters in over ___ provinces.


Quality training and educational materials are the mainstay of the ICCIC’s cooperative training program.  In 2005, the ICCIC produced a set of training and reference materials (Chinese and English bilingual versions) on rural cooperative economic organizations, and held eight training sessions for 325 people in Renshou and Tianquan Counties (Sichuan). It also organized 11 cooperative consultation events and issued 426 copies of training materials and documents.  More than 2300 persons recently attended 25 ICCIC cooperative training sessions and ten cooperative promotion events in Lishu (Jilin) and Dengfeng (Henan), and Shanghai.


Supporting research


The success of co-operatives stems from the sharing of lessons learned captured by quality research. The ICCIC’s close working relationship with governments, cooperative organizations, and research institutions such as the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) ensures that cooperatives remain relevant and effective tools for community development in China.



Linkages with foreign and Chinese cooperatives.

The ICCIC maintains close ties with other cooperative organizations at home and abroad. They include: the All-China Federation of Supply and Marketing Cooperatives, the All China-Federation of Handicraft Cooperatives, the Association of Chinese Industrial Cooperatives and the China Society of the Cooperative Economy. It’s overseas network includes the International Committee of Producers and Artisans Cooperatives (CICOPA) under the International Co-operative Alliance, the Canadian Co-operative Association, cooperative organizations in Germany, Slovakia, Spain, Japan, and Korea, as well as the World Bank, Oxfam and Plan International, and international organizations and friendship organizations in New Zealand, Australia, Singapore, Canada, America, Britain, and Belgium.


From 2001 to 2003, with the support of the New Zealand Government and New Zealand China Friendship Society, the ICCIC played a part in the founding of the Kathleen Hall[1] ICCIC Clinic in North Songjia Village, Quyang County (Hebei), and set up the Hebei Women’s Health Aid Project and the Rural Community Comprehensive Development Project there. Altogether, 386 women participated in the training, 219 women underwent a health survey and 167 women had medical treatment.



What is a cooperative?


A cooperative is an organization owned by the members who use its services or are employed there. Cooperatives provide consumers with a distinct values-based and community-owned and controlled alternative to private enterprise. Cooperatives around the world are guided by the same seven principles:

  1. Voluntary and open membership 
  2. Democratic member control
  3. Member economic participation
  4. Autonomy and independence
  5. Education, training, and information
  6. Cooperation among cooperatives
  7. Concern for community

Seeing is believing


We at ICCIC know that cooperatives bring tremendous benefit to their members. For those yet to discover this, the ICCIC develops model cooperatives to demonstrate, in very practical terms, how cooperatives work.


The ICCIC recently established three such cooperatives in Shandan (Gansu), Renshou (Sichuan), and Qianyang (Shaanxi) by delivering an intensive three-year program of training packages to help three existing cooperatives improve their management skills, promote democratic governance and improve production and marketing. As a result, two new cooperatives were formed in Shilipu. Sichuan Renshou Qingjian Fruit Professional Cooperative experienced greater member participation and a second fruit cooperative was formed.  Shannxi Qianyang Xinxing Handicraft Cooperative became a template for several new women’s handicraft co-operatives. Based on this success, and with support from the social development fund of the China Association for NGO Cooperation, the ICCIC carried out performance assessments, management audits and training for ten cooperatives in Jinzhong City and Shouyang County (Shanxi).



2012: the International Year of Cooperatives

The United Nations has declared 2012 the International Year of Cooperatives with the theme of Cooperative Enterprise Build a Better World.  In this special year, ICCIC will continue to raise awareness of cooperatives and the economic and social contributions they make, to support the growth and sustainability of cooperatives, and to create legacy initiatives that will live well beyond 2012. To learn more about 2012 IYC visit www.ica.coop/al-ica/

The Gung Ho movement in China

A proud history – A lasting legacy



Few international non-governmental organizations in China can trace their origins as far back as ICCIC and the Gung Ho Movement.


In 1937, Rewi Alley, Edgar and Helen Foster Snow, and patriots in China initiated the Gung Ho Movement. They organized laid-off workers and refugees displaced by the Japanese invasion to set up manufacturing cooperatives in aid of China’s resistance effort. This soon became a nation-wide civil movement of some 3,000 cooperatives..


To seek international support and promote the Gung Ho movement, Mme. Soong Ching Ling initiated the founding of the ICCIC in 1939, and was elected honorary chair. British Bishop of Hong Kong, R. D. Hall, was its chair. By the end of 1945, the ICCIC had raised some (USD) $10 Million in cash and materials from the United States, Britain, Canada, New Zealand, the Philippines, and Singapore -- gifts highly praised by senior leaders of the CPC, including Mao Zedong, Zhou Enlai and Ye Ting.


Gung Ho was originally the abbreviation of Industrial Cooperative, meaning to “work hard, and work together.” Evans F. Carlson, the then Military Attaché at the American Embassy in China made the phrase “Gung Ho” the slogan of the Carlson Commandos of the U.S. Marine Corps and its usage soon spread far and wide. The phrase was subsequently listed in English dictionaries to mean enthusiastic, quick to take action.


In 1937, a Briton named George Hogg came to China where he met Rewi Alley and devoted himself to Gung Ho. In 1941, Hogg became the principal of the Beili School, in Shuangshipu (Shaanxi), and then served as head of the Shandan Beili School (Gansu) where he died in 1945.


ICCIC suspended services in 1952 then resumed them in 1987 with China’s opening up to the world. Today, the spirit of the original Gung Ho Movement and its devotion to people owned and managed cooperative enterprise continues to benefit communities across China through the work of the ICCIC International Secretariat Office and the ICCIC International Training Centre, in Beijing.


ICCIC Governance


The ICCIC has nearly 150 individual members in China, Australia, Germany, Belgium, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Britain, the U.S.A. and the Hong Kong SAR.


In 1992, the ICCIC became a member of the International Organization of Industrial, Artisan and Service Producers’ Cooperatives. In 2010, the ICCIC became a member of the International Cooperative Alliance.






ICCIC Executive Committee


Michael Crook (Chair) – China

Dave Bromwich (Vice-Chair) – New Zealand

Song Zhendong (Vice-Chair) - China

Yu Lin (Vice-Chair) - China

Yuan Peng (Vice-Chair & Legal Representative) - China


ICCIC Executive Committee Members


Guo Lulai - China

Liu Denggao - China

Li Zhonghua - China

Li Zhiming - China

Shen Hui - China

Tao Yong - China

Wang Shuguang - China

Wang Yong - China

Zhang Gaoling - China

Tim Zachernuk - China





Learn more about the role cooperatives are playing in China’s growth and prosperity.


Visit our website:  www.iccic.org.cn


Call our office:           010-84623495 


Write to us:                The ICCIC International Secretariat Office: Flat 805, Block 3, Jili Jiayuan, No. 20, Shaoyao Ju, Chaoyang District, Beijing City (100029)


Fax: 010-84623495 


[1] Kathleen Hall (1896 – 1970) was a New Zealander. In 1922 she was accepted by the Anglican Society for the Propagation of the Gospel for missionary work in China and trained as a nurse in the Peking Union Medical College operated by British and American Protestant missions. In 1927, Kathleen was appointed Sister-in-Charge of the hospital at Anguo in Hebei Province where she trained over sixty nurses. Being a missionary attached to the Anglican hospital, time and time again she was able to purchase great quantities of medical supplies and take them through the Japanese lines to the Chinese army in Jin-Cha-Ji border area to support the anti-Japanese struggle led by the Communist Party of China.  Dr. Norman Bethune, the great communist doctor and fighter developed a deep revolutionary friendship with Kathleen Hall during their work together.

    Kathleen Hall was invited to come to China to attend the Grand Ceremony of National Day celebrations in 1960 and she was received by Premier Zhou Enlai, Mme Soong Ching Ling, and General Nie Rongzhen. She died in Hamilton in 1970. In accordance with her wishes, part of her ashes was placed in the Cemetery

Copyright: International Committee for the Promotion of Chinese Industrial Cooperatives
Address: Room 206, Library Building, Beijing Bailie University, No. 1 Shuangqing Road, Beijing 100085 CHINA
Tel 0086-10-84623495        Technical support: FreeEyes