The European Commodities Exchange is an association grouping 38 national Exchanges from 12 European countries. Its headquarters are at the Strasbourg Commodities Exchange, owing to the city’s central nature and the presence of the European institutions.
It was set up on an initiative by the Exchanges of Mannheim, acting under the name of the Arbeitsgemeinschaft der süddeutschen Produktenbörsen, and Strasbourg, which, as early as 1957, had together established a series of standard Franco-German contracts for the cereals trade.
The creation of the European Commodities Exchange was decided upon in 1960, with the aim of organising effective meetings between importers and exporters of all products grown within the Common Market countries, the free trade area and the State bodies of the countries of Eastern Europe. The founders thus wanted to redress the increasing dearth of meetings of the national Exchanges, due in particular to the development of remote means of communication.
The first European Exchanges, which adopted their name of European Exchange Days in 1964, took place in Strasbourg between 1961 and 1965.
After a relatively modest beginning, the European Commodities Exchange enjoyed continuous growth as of 1966, which lead to the organisation of annual Exchange Days in one of the cities in which a participating Exchange was based.
The interest accorded to this organisation gave it an international stature and the average participation in the European exchange days grew progressively from approximately 1000 people to 1800 and 2000. Operators in the agri-food market and representatives of the professions involved in this market, such as banks and shipping agents, attended the annual meetings assiduously.
In 1969, the "European Commodities Exchange grouping" adopted the legal form of an association under the system of local law in force in Strasbourg. Its management was awarded to the Strasbourg Commodities Exchange.
Functioning and European Commodities Exchange Days
It is directed by a President and a Vice-President, each appointed for two years, the Vice President succeeding the President in accordance with the statutes.
The General Meeting of members comes together once a year in October and a half-yearly information meeting takes place in spring.
In 2019, the 59th European Commodities Exchange, the organisation of which was entrusted to the Vienna Exchange, welcomed 3346 participants from all over the world.
In 2020, the 60th ECE in Berlin had to be canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemia.
The 61st European Commodities Exchange Days were awarded to Copenhagen and will take place on 7-8th October 2021.
Forthcoming Exchange Days will take place as follows:
- 2022 : Valencia (E)
- 2023 : Warsaw (POL)
- 2024 : Paris (F)
Orientations and objectives
Over the last two years, the European Commodities Exchange has also concentrated on several fundamental orientations, i.e.:
- the elaboration of a series of texts defining the economic ethics of the profession;
- the development of our relations with the competent European authorities;
- enlargement to Exchanges from Central and Eastern Europe;
- profit sharing with the younger elements in our sector of business with the objective of raising their awareness to future possibilities;
- participation in studies of European quality standards for cereals within the framework of the ICC.
At the present time and following the example of the single European currency, the European Commodities Exchange, at the proposal of Mr Enrico FERRARIO, is looking into the elaboration of a new standard cereals contract, valid throughout Europe, based on the individual contracts which already exist.
The objective is to simplify said contracts to make them clearer and better understood without changing their meaning.
There is absolutely no question of doing away with other contracts, which will keep their specificity. The intention is to make a standard reference model available to professionals.