This document has been made available in electronic format by the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA)
June, 1998
(Source: Asia-Pacific Co-op News, Vol. 5, No.1, Jan-Apr., 1998, p.4)

Joint workshop on `Restructuring of Co-operative Support Services in Asia-Pacific'
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The ICA ROAP has organised a Regional Workshop on Co-operative Support Services, in collaboration with the ILO Coopnet and the National Co-operative Union of India in New Delhi, 19-23 April, 1998.

More than 30 delegates representing from the Co-operative Movements and Governments in Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Mongolia, Nepal, Philippines, Vietnam, Sri Lanka and Thailand and international organisations like ILO, FAO and the Afro-Asian Rural Reconstruction Organisation (AARRO), apart from ICA and NCUI, participated and had very fruitful discussions.

The objectives of the workshop were to review the current institutional, financial and technical status of co-operative support services i.e.,. staff and leadership training, member education, management consultancy, accounting and auditing, project preparation and legal matters.

Country reports presented by the delegates focussed on the increasing competition due to deregulation and liberalisation, urgent need for co-op support services, necessity to bring suitable changes in co-operative legislation and systematic and comprehensive measures to provide consultancy services.

Mr. Jurgen Schwettmann of ILO Co-operative Branch made a presentation examining the co-operative support services in Asia and the Pacific.

Mr. Bhagat Singh, Additional Secretary in the Government of India presented a working paper on `Issues in Restructuring of Co-op Support Services in Asia-Pacific'.

Mr. Guo Yong Kang, Deputy Regional Director of the ICA ROAP, made presentation on `Necessary Conditions for Restructuring Co-operative Support Services'.

A working paper on `Restructuring of Auditing Services' was presented by Ms. Supatra Thanaseniwat of Thailand.

Working papers on Making Co-operative Training System Responsive and Effective' was resourced by Mr. K.K. Taimni, Regional Coordinator of ILO Coopnet/Coop Reform Programmes.

Another working paper on `Issues in Designing and Delivering an Effective Co-operative Management Consultancy Service' was also resourced by Mr. Taimni.

Mr. B.D. Sharma, Chief Executive of NCUI, presented a paper on `Restructuring other Support Services for Co-operatives'.

Each session of the workshop saw very serious discussions and the delegates were able to pin-point problems and tried to suggest their possible solutions.

It was felt that the 5 days' workshop was a long-overdue event and proved very productive and successful.

The ICA/ILO and the co-operative movements in the Region and other international organisations will follow-up on this regional workshop to further tackle the problems faced by the co-operative movement in the region on co-operative support services.

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As you know, until Decmeber, 1997 the Asia-Pacific Co-op News (ASPACON) was published every quarter.

In the spirit of efificency, it has been decided that the ASPACON will, hence forth, be issued only 3 times a year.

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- Editor ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------