Cooperatives play a role in reducing cost of goods in rural areas: Ewon
6 November 2023
By Nabalu News Journalist
KAPIT: Cooperatives play a role in helping the government reduce the cost of goods, especially in rural areas, Minister of Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives, Datuk Ewon Benedick said.
He mentioned that this can be achieved through the involvement of cooperatives in wholesale and retail businesses.
"Cooperatives obtain goods at lower prices through collective purchasing, which helps reduce costs for consumers and, at the same time, reduces the role of intermediaries in the food and goods supply chain.
"This helps reduce additional costs that could lead to price increases for consumers.
"This is where the role of cooperatives is demanded to assist the government's agenda in reducing the cost of living for the people," he said during his speech at the completion ceremony of the "Ngentak Tiang" Project for the Cooperative Song Kapit Berhad Smart Stream Petrol Station, at KM5, Sg. Tada, Engkabau Jalan Kapit-Song, yesterday.
Ewon mentioned that the Song Kapit Cooperative Berhad has received significant support and assistance from the ministry and the Malaysian Cooperative Commission (SKM), especially in activities related to wholesale and retail.
"This cooperative received a grant of RM97,000 under the Cooperative Economic Sector Assistance Programme (Prospek) in 2022 for the purpose of Upgrading the Cooperative Warehouse for DC Needs and Road Improvement to the Warehouse Area.
"In the previous year, the cooperative was also approved for a grant of RM100,000 under the Cooperative Supply Chain Empowerment Program (SCOPE) for the purpose of Upgrading Existing Sub-DC and Purchasing Lorries.
"With the support of MEDAC and SKM, it is hoped that the Song Kapit Cooperative Berhad can utilize all the assistance for the benefit of cooperative members and all residents in the Song District area," he said.
In this regard, Ewon hopes that the Song Kapit Cooperative Berhad can successfully implement price standardisation programmes that have been announced by the government to help rural residents enjoy the same prices for essential goods as those in major cities.
Regarding the Song Kapit Cooperative Berhad Smart Stream Petrol Station Project, he said it is a new branch of activities for the cooperative, in addition to wholesale and retail activities, contract work, and transportation.
"I hope that the Song Kapit Cooperative Berhad will succeed in high-impact activities such as petroleum-based activities," he said.
Also present during the event were the Chief Executive Officer of the Malaysian Cooperative Commission (SKM), Rusli Jaafar, Kapit District Officer Cerisologo Sabut, Chairman of the Board of Directors of IKMa Haji Mohd Yahya Haji Mat Sahri, Sarawak MEDAC agency heads, and local leaders.