Promoting role of cooperatives a way towards resilience in times of crisis

With good results of COVID-19 vaccines, the world’s countries are focusing on recovery measures for their populations and economies in the post-COVID-19 period.
The COVID-19 pandemic is disproportionately affecting the world’s most vulnerable countries and communities, and deepening many social and economic rifts.
During this pandemic, our regional cooperatives and syndicates joined together to work on helping local farmers and entrepreneurs sell their products through their networks while the pandemic has hindered logistics and trading of agricultural products from one area to another.
We can say that cooperatives pointed the way towards resilience in times of crisis.
It also reflects the contribution that cooperatives are making in addressing the challenges brought by the pandemic, achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and forging a path towards an inclusive and equitable future.
Regarding the agriculture sector, a bill on farmers’ organizations is being drafted and is designed to give the cooperative societies a leading role in promoting the farmers communities.
The law will guarantee solidarity of the co-ops across the country.
The cooperatives sector is playing an important role in helping farmers sell their products at wholesale markets, developing seed production cooperatives societies, and making the contract farming system in our country.
There are 39,470 cooperatives nationwide, with 4.3 million members in total. According to the statistics over 1.75 million members of the cooperatives have been granted over K375 billion under a small loan programme, and over 64,230 agricultural machinery worth over K110 billion have been sold in installments.
To help co-ops and syndicates strengthen their cooperation and solidarity, local authorities are highly advised to help farmers form cooperative syndicates, in accordance with the law.
We must all build solidarity and cooperation of cooperatives syndicates to create the necessary conditions to recover and prevent future crises.
To achieve the sustainable development goal in the agricultural sector, Myanmar is encouraging public-private-partnerships, while assessing the strengths and weaknesses of rice and other crops, and making efforts for improving agri- technologies.
Meanwhile, we need to attract local and foreign investments in this sector. But foreign direct investment in agriculture is still low.
Cooperatives have developed across the world in helping the socio-economic sector of the people, and cooperatives need to be used even more so in agriculture, livestock and manufacturing sectors in Myanmar.

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