Reshuffle expected soon in cooperative sector

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KUWAIT CITY, Aug 22: According to informed sources, the cooperative work sector, during the coming period, will witness “an unprecedented shake up” to correct its course and put it on the real development track, reports Al-Rai daily. They praised the recent decisions of the Minister of Commerce and Industry and Minister of Social Affairs Fahad Al-Shrai’an regarding cooperative work, foremost of which are the regulations for appointing boards of directors.

Affirming that cooperative work in Kuwait is one of the most successful Gulf and Arab experiences, the sources stressed the need to update its system to keep pace with the developments in this field, and enable cooperative societies to provide the best services to consumers.

They indicated that Minister Al-Shariaan formed a committee to track the “disastrous”violations that this sector witnessed during the past period, including the leadership appointments in many outlets, cooperative societies and their branches, which caused the majority of these outlets to be out of competition compared to parallel markets, either in relation to sales, or contributing to community service and sustainable development. They said, “Many of these outlets have fallen outside the scope of governance, which is supposed to regulate their work and appoint their officials. Therefore, the main challenge is to choose leaders capable of developing and achieving the aspirations of the people in terms of management, marketing, procurement, development, and others.

The sales of cooperative societies annually exceed one billion dinars. Some record more than KD 20 million, which makes them require controls that determine the course and fate of those amounts and the mechanisms of dealing and investing parts of them, away from any randomness, knowing that there are outlets that apply standards and achieve required ambition. The parallel markets were able to outperform cooperative societies, both at the level of competitive prices by offering goods at lower prices, and also by providing community services to the public. There is a defect that requires an active pause to correct the management approach of some cooperative societies through changes and developments on more than one level, especially with regard to the selection of experienced administrative cadres capable of planning and achieving accomplishments. The concerned authorities observed some holders of qualifications that are not related to the market, or in marketing and development at the head of certain entities and sectors.

The targeted resurgence of the cooperative sector will be included through supervisory work that guarantees this, while pumping new blood and placing the holders of certificates and qualifications in locations that suit them in the near future”. The sources indicated that, “There are 74 cooperative societies that own at least 350 outlets in various parts of Kuwait. It is unacceptable that they cannot keep pace with the competitive requirements and rules, compared to parallel markets that have a few branches and offer cheaper prices and more services to citizens and residents”.

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