Co-operative members in Johor urged to diversify business portfolio

JOHOR BARU: Co-operatives in Johor have been urged to diversify their existing business portfolio to increase income for the benefit of their members and the cooperative movement.

Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin said the success and achievement of co-operatives were not only measured from the figures that revolved around the co-operative movement, but rather on how they could contribute to the state's economic development.

"On behalf of the state government, many opportunities have been, and will continue to be given in order to make co-operative the key drivers of Johor's economy.

"Among them is the setting up of Koperasi Iskandar Malaysia Bhd (imCoop), especially in the wholesale and retail sector which is one of the major contributors to Johor's growth, and one of the efforts by the state government to help the people meet the rising cost of living through the establishment of fair-price shops," he said in his speech at the opening of the Johor state-level National Co-operative Day 2017 celebration at Plaza Angsana, here today.

The text of Mohamed Khaled's speech was read out by State Agriculture, Agro-based Industry, Entrepreneurship and Co-operative Development Committee chairman Ismail Mohamed.

Mohamed Khaled also cited the construction sector, which had been recognised as one of the major contributors to Johor's economy, totalling RM6.9 billion in 2015, and one which could bring huge benefits to the co-operative movement, such as the building of affordable housing for low and medium income earners.

"However, not many co-operatives in the state are involved in large scale supply of building materials. This should open the eyes of all co-operative leaders on the business potential of this sector," he said.

He also suggested co-operatives belonging to smallholders in the state form a coalition or consortium to enhance their capabilities in agricultural activities, like fruit and vegetable farming and large-scale livestock farming. — Bernama