Foreword (1997)

This document has been made available in electronic format
by the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA)

Preface (1997)

Source: Co-operative Laws in Asia and the Pacific
by G.K. Sharma (pp.vii)

During recent years, there has been a growing awareness of the
importance of good co-operative legislation and the negative
consequences of poor legislation for the successful operation of
co-operatives. This has coincided with a general agreement that
the control of the state over co-operatives should be considerably
reduced in developing countries if co-operatives are to function
as efficient, member-controlled business enterprises.

This collection and analysis of the major pieces of co-operative
legislation in Asia and the Pacific is not only a useful reference
tool, but also demonstrates the considerable progress which has been
made in the legislative environment of the region during the last
decade. The author himself deserves considerable credit for this
positive development, since it was during his tenure as ICA Regional
Director that the Alliance and its members focussed on legislation as
a high priority.

The regular meetings of Co-operative Ministers and officials, which
have been held under ICA auspices since 1989, and the extensive
preparatory work involved in these meetings, have undoubtedly
contributed to this improvement.

One can hope that, when the time comes for an update to this book
in a few years, the new co-operative legislation which is now under
active consideration in China, India, and Sri Lanka will also have
seen the light of day. Mr. Sharma's task of collection and analysis,
begun so well in this volume, is far from over.

Bruce Thordarson
Director General - ICA
July 21, 1997