New York, 20 November – Dr. Syarifuddin Hasan, State Minister for Cooperatives and SMEs of the Republic of Indonesia attended the UN IYC closing ceremony and presented the highlights and achievements that his country made during the international year.
In his remark, he strongly suggested that the number of members properly served by cooperatives and social contact with their members be considered as the central issues to judge the quality of a cooperative, instead of looking too much on economic measurements that may mislead cooperative missions from their genuine values and principles.
For the true cooperatives, he further added, member is everything.
The minister acknowledged that there are many cooperatives which are not good enough in term of their economic performances, and that they will not and never be listed in the global contest by using the current standards. However, many of those cooperatives are striving for their members to have enough food, proper housing, basic education, health services, loan and other basic needs. There is a huge number of low income people depend on the services of this type of cooperatives.
The Republic of Indonesia has a strong cooperative community which serves roughly 34 million members and has a combined turnover of USD 9.60 billion. There are 192,443 cooperatives in the country; of which, 7,831 are savings and loan cooperatives.
Their activities made during the international year included the introduction of a new emblem of cooperatives, international seminar on cooperatives, commemoration of the 65th Cooperative Day, national training program for students, cooperatives youth camp, conference on Global Development 300 and the introduction of a new revised cooperative law.
The Indonesian delegation also included Deputy Minister Setyo Heriyanto, Senior Advisor Hasan Jauhari, Deputy for Institutional Development Bagus Rachman, and Deputy Assistant Salekan.