The allegation levelled against the cooperative movement is that the institutions are confined to buying and selling money focusing their attention only on collecting deposits and lending the money. At a time when the cooperative movement is facing accusations like this, the cooperatives of the Jhapa district started moving forward by providing financial services as well as getting involved in other business activities.
These cooperatives have started promoting activities other than providing financial services, as per the guidelines set by the government to take forward agriculture, farming and other professional activities.
NMC linking with price chain
Jhapa-based Nepal Multipurpose Cooperative Society (NMC) established in 2050 B.S. extended its hand from financial transaction to multinational business activities for the first time in 23 years of its inception. In 2072 B.S. the cooperatives has set up a dairy industry with an investment of around Rs 150 million. Around 47 milk moistening plants have been established in 3 districts of Province 1. These plants are collecting some 15,000 liters of milk on daily basis and are being distributed among the customers.
Also the cooperatives has been selling and distributing various milk products manufactured in its plant. After establishing dairy industry the cooperative has been producing 270 liters of milk on daily basis by raising 45 cows since 2076. Similarly, the cooperative has opened a model farm house by purchasing 16 bighas of land since last fiscal year.
All kinds of agricultural products are available here. Besides, it has also started growing different kinds of plants, and vegetables.
The cooperatives has also managed necessary goods for an agriculture farming by allocating Rs. 2.30 crore, fifty per cent of which is received as grant from the provincial government.
The farmers can purchase agricultural tools from here and sell in other agricultural centres. The organization has also run tea industry in opened cooperative shops in 15 different places, where products of cooperatives are available. Similarly the Cooperatives has been involved in tea industry, fisheries and other sectors as well.
Sahara Savings and Loan Cooperative Society
Sahara Cooperative based in Jhapa has been helping low income groups by involving the common people in cooperatives for their socio-economic development. It is being discussed because of its significant contribution in the society. The organization provides financial assistance as well as other services to its members the as per their needs. As the savings and credit cooperatives are not be allowed to invest in private companies, Sahara has run a school under the name of Guthi, where the family members of cooperatives organization can study.
Similarly, the Cooperatives has also been providing loans to its members for agriculture and animal farming. Besides, it also helps to establish link between the market and the production. Similarly, Sahara will also provide financial support to its members to perform last rites in case of death of any of its members.
Mechi multi-purpose moving forward in manufacturing sector
Similarly, another cooperatives Mechi Multipurpose Cooperative is also providing services in the productive sector . Mechi has invested in rubber industry under specialized co-operative society. By planting more than 5,000 rubber trees it provide the chop rubber of the tree as raw material to the industry . Cooperatives are not only collecting savings from its members but also involved in financial literacy programme. Financial access has also been provided to its members. At the same time, the Sahara Cooperatives has also played an important role in creating a sense of belonging among the community claims Chief Executive Officer Mahendra Giri.
According to the statistics provided by the Department of Cooperatives, there are currently 29,886 cooperatives being operated across Nepal . There are 7,307,462 members of the cooperatives across Nepal. However, the department claims that 56 percent of the total members are women. There is currently around Rs. 9,410,500,000 capital being invested in the cooperative sector in Nepal.
Similarly, Rs 477.99 billion have been collected in the form of deposits while Rs 426.26 billion has been disbursed as loans . The cooperatives sector has been providing employment to more than 88,000 people.