Chamber of Commerce

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Chamber of Commerce
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Chamber of Cmmerce is an association bringing together businesses of region, city or country in order to promote the commercial interests of the region concerned. This is an organization of enterprises which are aimed at continuous development of their collective interests. Chamber of Commerce is the business federation representing the interests of many various businesses and organizations of every size and sector. Traders and businessmans from cities, villages and other areas unite form these local societies in order to advocate on behalf of the whole commerce community. The mission of chamber of commerce is to build relationships between businesses at every level: locally, nationally and internationally.

General features of Chambers of Commerce

Chambers's organizational forms vary depnding on the countries in which they are situated. However, there are also some common features that characterise evry chamber of commerce (V.I. Fedotov, 2007; s.3-4):

  • Particular chamber operate in one specific area
  • Chambers accept members without sectoral restrictions
  • Chambers are protected by national laws
  • The membership in particular chambers of commerce can be mandatory or voluntary- it depends on national legislation
  • Chambers providing members a collective voice in advocacy to represent and protect their interests.
  • Chambers perform public functions as for example register enterprises
  • System of chambers is hierarchical. We can single out a local, regional, national, and international chambers of commerce (V.I. Fedotov, 2007; s.3-4).

Public law and private law systems of Chambers of Commerce

Chamber systems can be divided into public law and private law chambers. Both forms differ in many respects. The substantial difference concerned the rules of participation. Regards to public law chambers the membership is mandatory. In return for participation enterprises need to pay fees. This model generate considerable resources in order to support businesses and undertake various trading activities on a large scale. The public chambers are much better resourced than a private on. They also have a privileged status. However their ability to implement effective involvement is limited due to significant dependence on the state. The first public law system evolved in France. Nowadays, this kind of chamber is the most common in majority European Union countries, inter alia in Germany, Austria, Italy, Spain. In the contrary to public law chambers in privete one the membership is voluntary. Private law chambers respresents an independent opinion of their members. When businesses do not want to participate in association, or disagree with chamber policies, they can withdraw at any time (B. Bennett, 2011's.23). The significant adventage of private structure is their independency and autonomy. They are closer to market needs and can develop accociated businesses through local network. However, income from participaton may be limited as membership is not mandatory. As a result of this the private law chambers usually operate on smaller scale than a public chambers. In addition to these models sometimes we can single out some mixed models of chambers. That kind of association we can find in Japan and Thailand. They are characterised by public law status but voluntary membership (M.Heseltine,2012; s.7).

Chamber's services and support

Chambers of Commerce offer a range of business services and support for their members. Theu provide training and consultancy services such as human resource development programmes, courses for upgrading skills and technological knowledge, business meetings and conferences. Chambers take care of trade and business development. They arrange investment opportunities for memebrs, through organising tradee, exhibitions and meetings between members. In case of any problems or enquiries participants may also count on meritorical support. Chambers of commerce provide also up to date business information for example mdifications in government rules and regulations (J. Tan Lan Eng, 2000; s.6-10).


Author: Aneta Walczyk