A) Cooperative Extension and Development
1. To create a positive attitude towards cooperatives, Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance and Broadcasting Organization of Iran are assigned to cooperate with Ministry of Cooperatives to carry out promotional measures and to introduce and publicize cooperative success models and advantages.
2. Ministry of Cooperatives is duty bond to take necessary measures for adoption of Cooperative Law Amendment Bill in order to introduce diverse and resilient cooperative methods; increase capital and share distribution; decrease quorum of the least number of cooperative members aiming at employment generation; any other issues for facilitation and encouraging people to establish and run cooperatives; and to safeguard cooperative principles and values.
3. Concerned organizations are obliged to take necessary actions for amendment of regulations on encouraging people to establish and develop cooperatives and diminishing or eliminating costs within framework of the Constitution Article 44 of General Policies with the collaboration of Ministry of Cooperatives in a 6 month period. This includes Tax Law, Usury Free Banking Operation Law, Act on Regulation of Part of Government Financial Regulations and etc.
4. Ministry of Education and Ministry of Science, Research & Technology are bound to take actions for cooperative promotion throughout the country by conducting training courses on cooperative topics particularly on cooperative principles and values at various educational level; also to support establishment of higher education centers and faculties to train cooperative experts.
5. Ministry of Cooperatives is assigned to:
5-1- Financially and mentally support studies and researches on diversification of cooperative methods and structures as well as launching and promoting adaptable cooperative models aiming at enrichment of cooperative theory and its adjustment with national time and local circumstances while preserving cooperative principles and values.
5-2- Amend regulations and methods in order to simplify and to cut cooperative registration stages.
5-3- Supply required facilities for technical and vocational trainings, entrepreneurship and cooperative management trainings, also conducting internship courses for applicants of newly-established cooperative membership and members through funding part of educational expenditures. To this end, the State Management and Planning Organization shall predict necessary budget resources on national annual budget bills.
5-4- Grant interest-free loan, through Cooperative Development Bank, to job applicants of employment generating cooperatives to purchase their shares.
5-5- Establish and develop entrepreneurship development databank of cooperative sector, with the collaboration of all concerned organizations. Such databank includes all required and updated information on various stages of cooperative formation, management and development, such as investment rules, regulations and priorities, economic projects, banking facilities, human resources and markets.
5-6- Set up inter-organization network for issuance of necessary permits on cooperative operation, with the collaboration of concerned organizations.
5-7- Adopt comprehensive plan on cooperative development at national and provincial levels, with the collaboration of executive organizations and governor offices.
5-8- Develop technical holding cooperatives, cooperative townships and complexes, cooperative societies for designing, consultation and construction of cooperative units, mixed cooperative-public-private companies in order to assist development of small employment generating cooperatives, through which, public and private share will gradually transferred to cooperatives. These companies bring small cooperatives into partnership in lower stream projects and design and establish big cooperative townships and complexes as follows:
- Producer complexes in agriculture, industry and mine sectors
- Health villages and blocks as well as cooperative compounds for medical and health care services in all provinces
- Mega cooperative chain stores (cooperative malls)
- Educational, cultural, welfare, entertainment and sports cooperative complexes
- High-rise housing complexes in big cities and construction of new townships
- Urban and suburban services cooperative complexes, particularly urban and suburban transportation
- Village governing, district development and borderline settlement development service cooperative complexes
5-9- Take measures for establishment and development of national inclusive cooperatives with the membership of three first deciles of society. To this end, State Management and Planning Organization, under coordination of Ministry of Cooperatives, is bound to allocate 30% of income arising from transference of public sector’s share to cooperatives, stipulated in annual budget bills, aiming at poverty eradication and meeting their needs including employment and housing.
5-10- Take measures for adoption of required bills and encouraging establishment of public joint stock cooperative societies in order to draw further investments towards cooperative sector and increasing investments.
5-11- Encourage formation of types of congenial, supplementary and cluster cooperative enterprises, with the collaboration of sectoral executive organizations, for private businesses and SMEs in cooperative and private sectors, aiming at boosting investment, employment, exportation, enhancing competitiveness, practicing integrated management and completing production-distribution chain of strategic commodities; in particular, production and distribution of livestock, poultry, aquatics and their products, tea, rice, citrus, dates, fruits and vegetables, saffron, handicrafts and carpet, food industries, mining industries, macro and mother industries.
6. Ministry of Cooperatives and concerned executive organizations, Central Bank and Central Insurance are assigned to supply required facilities, adopt necessary strategies, suggest needed bills and approvals and take other key measures, per case, in order to enhance cooperative participation in types of activities including those issues stipulated in the first Para of Article 44 of the Constitution such as big and mother industries (oil, gas and petrochemicals, steel, etc.), banking & insurance, power generation, post & telecommunication, road & railway, shipping, aviation, dams and big water supply networks,… within framework of General Policies of Article 44. Also to facilitate partnership of public companies in establishment of inclusive cooperatives up to 49%, to define share and priority of cooperatives in case of any restriction for permit issuance, to take necessary actions for cooperatives to utilize legal priorities.
B) Cooperative Easy Access to Required Resources and Facilities
1. Industrial Townships Company is obliged to provide cooperative societies and unions with required lands and facilities with the coordination of Ministry of Cooperatives.
2. Ministry of Cooperatives is duty bond to design and establish cooperative townships and complexes in provinces in priority fields with new cooperatives based in them under bilateral partnership of government and cooperative sector in order to facilitate cooperative access to investment basic requirements and to increase added-value of small cooperatives projects.
3. In effect of Para A, Article 28 of the Act on the Fourth Development Plan, Ministry of Agriculture Jihad is duty bond to bail lands of natural resources to cooperative societies, based on priority and freely, as introduced by Ministry of Cooperatives, to create road welfare service complexes; furthermore, in execution of Para A, Article 108 of the Act on the Third Development Plan, to bail lands in big-size economic scale to qualified applicant cooperatives to perform priority agricultural activities.
4. Ministry of Housing and Urban Development and municipalities with the collaboration of Ministry of Cooperatives are duty bond to make arrangements so as housing cooperatives would be able to construct at least 35% of new towns and townships and to renovate old city quarters.
5. Upon a by-law to be issued by Ministry of Cooperatives and Ministry of Economic Affairs and Finance, in order to take recovery measures as a result of cutting public services from employees’ consumer cooperatives (subject of Para H, Article 145 of the Act on the Fourth Development Plan), concerned organizations are duty bond to transfer public resources to consumer cooperatives, as per their demands, including land, warehouse, building, vehicle and equipment, on hire purchase and installment purchase basis; also concerned organizations including Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, Management and Planning Organization and Central Bank are duty bond to support establishment of chain supermarkets by civilian staffs’ cooperatives and other cooperatives with the collaboration of Ministry of Cooperatives.
6. Allocation of parts of managed funds and technical credit contributions from public budget as well as incomes arising from transference by Ministry of Cooperatives; granting facilities, directly or indirectly through integration with internal resources of banks and credit institute; subsidy provision by diminishing interest and commission of banking facilities; risk coverage for granting banking facilities to cooperatives; undertaking costs of empowerment (training, internship and helping investment infrastructure operations) particularly for national inclusive cooperatives; to all these ends, Management and Planning Organization will ensure required resources proportionate with quantity objectives.
7. Allocation of at least 54% of banks and credit finance institutes investment facilities to cooperative sector through integration of public budget resources with banks internal resources during period of 2005-2009; also, allocation of at least Rls. 7,000 billion based on fixed rate of 2002, in an annual basis to ensure funds (working capital) required by cooperatives.
8. Allocation of shares or giving priority to cooperatives as far as foreign currency reserve facilities are concerned.
9. Encouraging foreign investments to be injected and authorizing cooperatives to issue investment portfolios guaranteed by the government and/or Central Bank.
10. Establishment of Cooperative Development Bank (governmental) through transformation of one of existing public banks and helping to ensure its resources so as to be able to supply at least 30% of required facilities for cooperative sector.
11. Capital boost-up and reinforcement of role of Cooperative Fund to equip required resources for cooperative sector so as cooperative institutions and cooperative townships and complexes would be able to establish big cooperatives, to undertake risk of granting banking facilities to cooperatives, to issue bonds and debentures guaranteed by government and Central Bank, to attract resources from foreign capitals markets, and to grant loans in order to supply whole or part of shares required by university graduate members and society’s three first deciles.
12. Making effort to establish cooperative big banks, insurance companies and credit institutes, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Finance, Central Bank and Central Insurance are duty bond to amend and draw up needed rules and regulations, per case, with the collaboration of Ministry of Cooperatives.
13. Adoption of a comprehensive plan on bailing public sector’s share to cooperatives. To this end, at least 15% of the shares will be absorbed by civilian employees’ cooperatives and 15% by SMEs and businesses complementing transferring enterprises; at least 50% of government share will be transferred equally to the three first deciles as share baskets within framework of national and provincial inclusive cooperatives (Justice Shares); the rest of government shares will be transferred to other entrepreneurs and people. This could also be fulfilled through determining share of each social class in the form of national inclusive cooperatives.
14. Delegation of dams and massive irrigation networks operation and other activities to cooperatives, excluding delegation of their ownership.
15. Delegation of industrial townships to cooperatives consisting of enterprises based in them provided that the owners of new enterprises have the right to membership.
16. Delegations to cooperatives from commercial sector, transport sector, social sector and other assignments by Government to non-public sectors, on priority basis, with the collaboration of Ministry of Cooperatives.
17. Granting public subsidies and contributions to cooperatives, proportionate to the number of members.
C) Cooperative Productivity Enhancement and Market Development
1. Development and implementation of cooperative managers and employees comprehensive training plan
2. Provision of financial and non-financial supports for development of ICT and e-commerce in cooperative sector; taking required measures to form organizations of higher level, networking and strengthening technical, financial and economic linkages and transactions among cooperatives; to reduce costs, to facilitate the access of newly-established and small cooperatives to cooperative sector market and to assist cooperative relations with other sectors. To this end, Cooperative Development Bank and other commercial banks and credit institutes provide cooperatives with necessary credit lines upon demand of Ministry of Cooperatives.
3. To enhance the status, capacity and capabilities of Iran Central Chamber of Cooperatives (ICCC) and other cooperative chambers nationwide through amendment of governing regulations so as to enable all types of cooperatives, including cooperatives under Ministry of Cooperatives and Ministry of Agricultural Jihad, to have their representative in those chambers.
4. To encourage establishment of new cooperative enterprises under patronage of ICCC, including “cooperative marketing center”, “cooperative goods supply and provision network”, “cooperative national and international exhibitions”, “cooperative R&D centers”, “cooperative universities and higher education institutes”, “cooperative export development funds” and so on;
5. To support attraction of advanced technology and foreign trade partnership by cooperatives and dynamic interaction with the world economy, particularly with cooperatives of other countries, aiming at expansion of cooperative export market
6. To encourage modernization of structure, machineries and equipment by old cooperatives
7. To financially support R&D and innovative activities of cooperative sector
8. To promote standardization and ranking of cooperative management as well as promotion of cooperative management and products quality and assisting cooperatives to acquire management, goods and services standard certificates
9. To support startup cooperatives, financially and non-financially, to access to final market, to promote their goods and services and to make public transactions market available to cooperatives; also, “Newly-established Cooperatives Production & Service Guarantee Fund” is to be established with mutual collaboration of public and cooperative sector.
D) Maintaining Cooperative Values & Goals and Supporting People’s Rights
1. To develop and implement cooperative supervision and evaluation comprehensive plan, aiming at achievement of quality and quantity objectives
2. To standardize cooperative accounting and auditing system; to develop accounting and auditing service cooperatives and to delegate related tasks as well as monitoring cooperative general assemblies to these cooperatives and cooperative chambers
3. To launch cooperative independent stock markets in order to shed light on cooperative information and operation and to facilitate members entry and exit
4. To create cooperative conciliation and arbitration authorities and/or councils under cooperative chambers, in order to study claims and complaints by cooperative members, and to adopt disciplinary strategies to deal with cooperative breaches and violations.
E) Building up Government Role
1. To reinforce authorities and facilities of Ministry of Cooperatives:
- membership of Cooperative Minister in Money and Credit Council, Supreme Board of Transferring Public Shares, Welfare and Social Security High Council, General Assembly of Rural Cooperative Organization, Foreign Currency Reserve Fund Board of Trustees
- establishment of Cooperative High Council presided by the President, the Secretariat of which will be based in the Ministry of Cooperatives, to centralize policymaking and coordination of cooperative sector development plan
- assignment of vacant positions in the Ministry, either in the capital, provinces or cities, and establishment of cooperative department in all cities with governor office.
2. To allocate an independent budget in national budgeting system to cooperative sector
3. To revise national statistics (Statistics Center of Iran) and national accounts (Central Bank of Islamic Republic of Iran) and to execute a comprehensive plan of cooperative registrar statistics system
F) Other Issues
1. To amend rules and regulations and to adopt enabling ones for better implementation of policies
2. To finance and to raise fixed assets of cooperative sector within two 4th and 5th Development Plans up to 30% of total national assets in order to boost cooperative sector share of GDP to 25%
3. To put cooperative sector General Policies into effect in delegation of public sector’s operation and enterprise to cooperatives.