Government focus on cooperatives to bring down cost of living

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The government has focused on cooperatives and Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) to stimulate the economy and bring down the cost of living.

Cooperatives and Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui said this will eradicate hunger, create jobs, expand the tax base, and improve foreign exchange balance for inclusive growth.

He added that cooperatives have continued to play an important role on aggregation, primary processing, transport, marketing and savings mobilization.

“This includes financial inclusion with loud footprints in all sectors of the economy,” he  pointed out. 

Chelugui said the blue economy presents untapped potential of our ocean, lakes, rivers
and coastal areas.

His remarks were contained in a speech read on his behalf by the ministry principal secretary Patrick Kiburi Kilemi during Bandari DT  Sacco’s  9th chamas symposium held at Wildwater Centre in Mombasa county.

The CS said in his speech that  these assets hold tremendous promise for economic
development, job creation as well as environmental conservation.

Chelugui said he has noted with satisfaction the role Bandari DT Sacco is playing in the economy at the coast with an asset base of Ksh 12 Billion.

He pointed out that it has over 23,000 members and 800 chamas.

“You have utilized this strength to provide affordable financial services to business start-ups and low income earners at the bottom of the economic pyramid,” he pointed out.

The CS pointed out this is a welcome step that will complement the government’s bottom-up economic transformation agenda (BETA).

Chelugui reminded the chamas symposium participants that  they have created to link chamas to strategic partners in the blue economy space coupled with the innovative solutions.

In his welcome remarks the Sacco chairman Kenneth Sungu pointed out that the chama account was introduced by the Sacco in the year 2014 as a means to resource mobilisation at a time when most Saccos and the co-operative movements in general were struggling to meet growing demand.

He pointed out this was for credit facilities occasioned by rapid and sustained growth of the lower and middle income classes in society.

The Sacco Chief Executive Officer Joseph Bee pointed out the chama account at the organization has continued to register tremendous growth over the years.

He disclosed with current consolidated deposits of Kshs 308,856,876.02 and a loan portfolio of Kshs 283,350,144.14 which is 3.56 per cent of the total loan book with a membership of over 500 accounts.

“Its consisting of Welfare Groups, Business Groups, Women Groups and Youth Groups,” he  added.

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