PUTRAJAYA, July 9 (Bernama) — Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak today outlined three approaches — structural change, good governance and setting performance targets — to transform cooperatives into a large, total and comprehensive sector.
The prime minister said it was necessary to determine if cooperatives should undergo a structural change to be competitive.
He drew a parallel to the merging of commercial banks into eight anchor banks, and said unless cooperatives were merged into bigger entities they would achieve little success.
“If we undertake a structural change, the bigger the cooperative in terms of size and significance, the better,” he said when launching National Cooperative Day 2011, here.
Domestic Trade, Cooperatives and Consumerism Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob was also present at the event. The National Cooperative Day 2011 carries the theme “Transformation of Cooperatives Generates the People’s Economy”.
Najib also said that cooperatives should practise good governance, similar to what the government required of government-linked companies (GLCs).
“We must uphold good governance in the cooperative movement. It does not matter whether the cooperative is big or small. We must have the commitment to exercise good governance to achieve the desired transformation.
“We can have good governance. If we have only a part-time administrator, we can find someone who can work full-time, someone who is a professional and has the capability, competency and integrity to be the agent for transformation of our cooperative,” he said.
On setting performance targets, Najib said every cooperative should set targets in the form of Key Performance Indicators (KPI) to make their business more efficient and raise the income of members.
He said performance must show outcome instead of output, and added that usually the thick reports were filled with minutes of meetings, visits and activities but nothing about outcome.
“People may say that we are hardworking if we have meetings every week or every month, but what is the outcome? It is important to have activities and programmes, but preference must be for outcome in our transformation,” he said.
Najib also said that if one was satisfied with the status quo, then change would not happen, what more transformation, because transformation meant total change.
He said people who succeeded were those bold enough to take up challenges to bring the cooperative to a level which they could be proud of.
Those who maintained the status quo would go about the business as usual without undertaking improvements and would not challenge themselves and their staff to draw up strategies or new models for the cooperative, he said.
“When we opt for transformation, we are the catalysts for transformation of the cooperative movement in the country.
“We cannot remain in the comfort zone. We must challenge ourselves to do much more based on studies and not haphazardly,” he said.
Najib gave the assurance that he would consider the several proposals from the cooperative movement, among them a suggestion that small and medium enterprise (SME) cooperatives be recognised for loans from the SME Bank and other banks under the category of SMEs and that the tax for cooperatives be reduced.
Source : Bernama