The Malaysian government has announced a review of co-operative governance and legislation to enable the sector to grow.
The announcement was made on 12 February at the launch of the centenary celebrations of the country’s first co-operative in 1922. The event highlighted the the sector’s role in Malaysia’s economic development, with around 100 co-op leaders in attendance, including Abdul Fattah Abdullah, president of national co-op federation Angkasa.
The minister for entrepreneur development and co-operatives, Tan Sri Noh Omar, said the review would aim to put the right checks and balances in place. He said that in some co-operatives, the same person held both the president and chief executive position.
“That is why we must have checks and balances, so this needs to be separated,” he told a press conference after the event.
In March 2021 ,the Malaysian government launched a Cooperative Transformation Plan for 2021-2025, which seeks to enable entrepreneurs in the informal and micro economy sector to join forces by setting up co-operatives. The plan also suggests converting the Malaysian Cooperative Institute into a higher education institution specialising in co-operative entrepreneurship.
The government will also assist co-ops in opening 500 new Coopmart food stores, particularly in rural and disadvantaged areas.
Malaysia has 14,657 registered co-operative with 6.5 million members.