A non-political, non-governmental body, WCF is the backbone of the chamber community, uniting the global network of 12,000 chambers and their business communities.
The World Chambers Federation is a unique and truly global forum that not only helps individual chambers to become more productive, but also strengthens links among them. From managing the ATA Carnet system, which allows for the duty-free and tax-free temporary import of goods, to the International Certificate of origin Accreditation Chain, WCF offers a wide range of products and services to help chambers deliver the best possible service to their respective members.
WCF provides a platform for chamber leaders to communicate and collaborate with each other on matters of mutual interest and helps establish beneficial partnerships. Every two years WCF stages the World Chambers Congress, one of the most anticipated events in the chamber calendar. A key feature of the Congress is the World Chambers Competition, the only global awards programme to recognize the most innovative projects undertaken by chambers around the world.
WCF activities and projects involve local, regional, national, bilateral, transnational, as well as public-law and private-law chambers.
Chambers of commerce are an essential and credible intermediary between government, business and the general public, representing international and national corporations, to small- and medium-sized companies. As local business support agencies, chambers of commerce connect ICC to small- and medium-sized companies and promote the important role they play in the global economy. WCF recognizes the valuable contribution of SMEs and helps them to face the challenges and opportunities of globalization.
With a history spanning over 400 years, chambers today exist in almost every country and offer a multitude of programmes and services to support trade and development.
To enhance chamber capacity to foster private sector development, WCF has developed strong ties with a range of multilateral organizations, including the World Bank, United Nations Development Programme and regional development banks.
WCF also works with other private sector groups to extend programmes of assistance and training for chambers of commerce, particularly from developing and least developed countries.
Initially called the International Information Bureau of Chambers of Commerce, WCF was renamed International Bureau of Chambers of Commerce in 1966, before adopting its present name in 2001.