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Centre begins consultation on setting up national database on cooperatives

The Centre has started a consultation process with various stakeholders on building a national on cooperatives which will help in convergence of various schemes implemented by states and the central government as well as in establishing good governance and market orientation.

Recently, the first meeting was held under the chairmanship of Cooperation Secretary D K Singh. The representatives from cooperative federations and institutions like RBI, NABARD and IRMA were present besides central and state government officials.

Speaking with PTI, a senior Cooperation Ministry official said: “The National Cooperative Database was welcomed by one and all. This will be the most important policy making tool in the cooperative sector.”

Currently, there is no authentic data repository even though many state governments and central ministries are running schemes for the benefit of their domain cooperatives, he said.

To streamline the database, the official said the stakeholders have been asked to give details of the present status and form of data availability, if it is in digital or physical form.

They have been asked to help in identification of important data sets and parameters (common and sector specific).

The stakeholders have also been asked to give their views on how much live data can be and frequency and mechanism of its updation. They have been asked to give suggestions on ways to ensure data accuracy and reliability, the official added.

On the motto behind setting up of a national database, the official said that it will act as an effective planning tool for state governments, central ministers, federations, cooperators, sectoral institutions like NABARD and RBI.

It will also help provide an authentic input for meeting training needs of the sector. Its geo-spatial analysis will give insights for further expansion of the sector, the official said.

Further, the official said that this database will help assess the contribution of the cooperative sector in the national economy and hence will help make efforts for achieving the national goal of a USD 5 trillion economy.

It will also help in benchmarking intra and inter sectors besides increasing the scope for inclusion of start-ups, he added.

Currently, there are 8.5 lakh cooperatives as per the data maintained by the National Cooperative Union of India (NCUI). Out of which, 20 per cent are credit cooperatives and remaining 80 per cent are non-credit cooperatives covering diverse sectors.

State cooperatives are governed under respective State Cooperative Acts whereas Multi-State Cooperatives are regulated under MSCS Act.

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