About Us

Benin, Bhutan and Costa Rica entered into a partnership through the South-South Cooperation Programme for Sustainable Development, with the financial support from the Kingdom of the Netherlands. This initiative was established in 2002 based on the principles of equality, reciprocity and participation of all societal stakeholders.

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DVD: Programme for South-South Cooperation

The different chapters of this DVD are described below and can be found on our YouTube channel. Click on the title to view the chapter.

The South-South Cooperation Program - General Video

An introduction to the PSC (Programme for South-South Cooperation).

3 countries on 3 different continents have come together to work for a common goal: the sustainable development of their people. With this in mind, the South-South Cooperation Program was set up. It promotes a reciprocal exchange of knowledge and experiences between Costa Rica, Bhutan and Benin.

Benin and South-South Cooperation

An introduction to this country of colour and music, in which traditional beliefs and customs retain a large role. Selected by the Dutch government to take part in a cooperative development project with Costa Rica, Benin has already seen 35 local projects targeted at those in most need, notably children in rural areas and women.

Benin and Costa Rica to develop South-South Cooperation

From Young women in Benin, to the Calazans Home and Talamanca Highland in Costa Rica, the projects financing by the Programme for South-South Cooperation (PSC) allowed very vulnerable populations to have access to education and training. Based on the principles of equality (of partner countries and stakeholders); reciprocity (among partner countries and stakeholders) and participation (of civil society, vulnerable groups, governments, academia and business...) South-South cooperation is leading to increased sense of ownership and self reliance.

Edible Insects: from Benin to Costa Rica

To outsiders it may seem unusual, but in Benin insects are common snack.  South-South cooperation is allowing Costa Rica to learn about the benefits of this healthy and environmentally-friendly source of food.

In turn, Costa Rica has shared its expert knowledge of the crucial importance of mangrove forests to the local ecosystem, in addition to their benefits in combating climate change.

Benin - Lighting the way forward

In developed countries, it is easy to take for granted the benefits of electric lighting, so ubiquitous is it in our homes and buildings.  In rural areas of Benin, however, a lack of adequate lighting can hinder school classrooms, and even maternity wards.  Solar-powered lighting has been introduced to help overcome the problem.

Situated on the same latitude and with a similar climate, both Costa Rica and Benin are producers of pineapples.  South-south cooperation has enabled them to share expertise with respect to organic farming methods.

Benin and Costa Rica - Musical ties across the Atlantic

It is often said that music can bring people together and this is no less true of countries.  Sharing an historical link through colonialism, there are clear similarities in the musical cultures of Costa Rica and Benin, which the South-South Cooperation project has drawn out for all to enjoy.

Bhutan and South-South Cooperation

Developing sustainable tourism, preservation for biodiversity, efficient use of energy and recycling activities, the Programme for South-South Cooperation (PSC) allowed Bhutan through a typical cooperation with Benin and Costa Rica to introduce sustainable tourism and develop guidelines for sustainable management. Bhutan a country of around half a million inhabitants created with PSC new sustainable services and community participation for income generation in symbiosis with its cultural inspirations.

Bhutan and Costa Rica - The exchange of handicrafts techniques

There is a remarkable similarity between the traditional weaving techniques practised by indigenous communities in Costa Rica and women in Bhutan.  The South-South Cooperation Project has enabled the exchange of knowledge with regards to the commercialisation of this cottage industry in Costa Rica.  To maintain authenticity, the industry has developed a label which guarantees genuine indigenous production.

Bhutan - Tourism and development

Tourism can be a vehicle of economic development. South-South Cooperation has permitted Costa Rican tourist experts to travel to Bhutan to help train the locals in offering adventure tourism on Bhutan's famous and picturesque rivers.

Bhutan - Recycling and energy efficiency

The treatment of waste and the reduction of pollution is a global problem faced not least by developing countries. In this context countries can learn from one another. A Bhutanese delegation visited Costa Rica to learn more about waste management and recycling, and how it may adapt this knowledge to its own specific needs.

Bhutan Experts teach Costa Ricans how to grow edible mushrooms

Part of the projects financing by the Programme for South-South Cooperation (PSC), the work of the six towns from Cerro de la Muerte collected over 30 different spices to be consumed and exported widely. The project facilitates sharing of the Bhutanese experience in the promotion and commercialization of cultivated and wild, edible mushrooms, with an aim to alleviate poverty while giving attention to ecology, gender and other socioeconomical concerns.