Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
The list below may be able to answer you question. If not,
please visit our Contact Us section.
How many CI members are there?
CI currently has over 240 members organisations from around 120
What type of organisations does CI represent?
Our members are made up of regional, national and local consumer
groups, consumer government agencies and consumer-related issue
groups from all over the world.
At one end of the scale is the Consumers Union in the US, which
was founded almost 70 years ago and has more than 300 staff and 4.5
million individual consumers as its own members. At the other end
are semi-voluntary associations providing information and advice
and concentrating on education and community development to improve
access to food, water and other basic services in some of the
world's poorest countries.
Government agencies similarly run from major competition and
fair trading agencies to recently established government
departments in small countries addressing consumer issues for the
Where are CI member organisations based?
About two-thirds of member organisations are in Latin America,
Africa, Asia and Central/Eastern Europe and in countries of the
former Soviet Union, the other third in Western Europe and North
Are there different types of CI member categories?
Yes. We have Full members, which are generally national consumer
organisations; Affiliate members, who may be local groups, or
single issue groups; and Government Affiliate members, which are
generally consumer protection agencies.
You can get full details on our Member
How does an organisation become a member of CI?
Organisations need to meet a number of criteria to become a
member. Find out more in our Being
a CI member section.
How is CI funded?
CI has a turnover of about US$5,500,000. Approximately 35% of
our funding is through members fees. The remaining funds are
secured through project grants from foundations and government
CI does not take any money from business.
Who runs CI?
All Full members have voting rights at the General Assembly,
which determines the overall policies and priorities for the
organisation. They meet every four to five years, when CI holds its
As well as setting overall policy, the General Assembly elects a
President and a Council from among its members, as the
organisation's Board. The Council in turn appoints an eight-member
Executive to which some Board responsibilities are delegated.
Read more about CI's Council and Executive members in our Governance Bodies
How many offices does CI have and where are they?
CI is a global organisation with four offices situated in
Johannesburg, South Africa; Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; London, UK;
and Santiago, Chile.
Does CI handle individual consumer complaints?
CI does not deal with individual consumer complaints. If you
have an issue you would like to raise concerning poor quality goods
or services, you should contact your national consumer organisation
or your national or local government advice service.
Visit our Member
Directory to find out which CI members organisations may be
able to help you.