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Tuesday, 18 July 2017

(The Star) Ministry to table Bill to improve co-op sector

PETALING JAYA: A new Bill to improve the co-operative sector will be tabled at the following Parliament session this year, said Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Minister Datuk Seri Hamzah Zainudin.

“This is to enhance the co-operatives sector and to ensure more transparency within it,” he said after the pre-launch ceremony of the National Co-operatives Day.

As of May 31, 2017, there are 13,617 registered co-operatives nationwide, with 7.07 million members. According to the Parliament’s official website, the Dewan Rakyat sitting will resume on July 24.

“There are some areas we want to liberalise and at the same time we will tighten some of the regulations,” Hamzah said.

“For example, we will focus on credit co-operatives so that such co-operatives will not be misused by loan sharks.”

He said that once the Bill is passed, there will also be some changes in the organisational structure of the Malaysia Co-operative Societies Commission (SKM).

The co-operative sector posted a total turnover of RM39.66bil in 2016, growing 18.2% year-on-year.

Hamzah said he is confident the total turnover can reach RM40bil.

“If the Malaysian economy grows 5% this year, we expect the turnover to grow in tandem with it, reaching RM41.64bil,” he said.