Bandar Seri Begawan Thursday, 12 July 2012 M/ 22 Sya’aban 1433H-A Co-operative Seminar was held today with the theme 'Towards a New Dimension in Co-operative Movement’ at Dewan Setia Pahlawan, Ministry of Industry and Primary Resources (MIPR), Jalan Menteri Besar. The seminar is expected to be attended by about 300 participants representing co-operative leaders and members throughout the country.
The guest of honour was Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Seri Utama Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Yahya Bin Begawan Mudim Dato Paduka Haji Bakar, the Minister of Industry and Primary Resources (MIPR). Also in attendance were the Permanent Secretary of MIPR, Yang Mulia Dayang Hjh Normah Suria Hayati bte Pehin Jawatan Dalam Seri Maharaja Dato Seri Utama Dr Hj Awang Mohd Jamil Al-Sufri; the Deputy Permanent Secretary of MIPR, Yang Mulia Awg Mohd Riza bin Dato Paduka Hj Mohd Yunos, senior officials of MIPR and BINA, speakers, and invited guests. The ceremony began with the recitation of Surah Al-Fatihah and Doa Selamat and is followed by a welcoming speech by Yang Mulia Awang Haji Metassan bin Haji Abdul Salim, Acting Director of BINA cum Acting Registrar of Co-operatives. Later, the guest of honour delivered a speech at the seminar and toured the exhibition booths of products and services showcased by the participating co-operatives. A swiflet-breeding company from Malaysia also participated in the exhibition.
The seminar is part of the planned events organised by BINA throughout the year to celebrate the World Co-operative Year 2012 which is being declared by the Geneva-based, the International Co-operative Alliance. This event is one of the nine strategies outlined by BINA in its five-year Co-operative Development Strategic Plan (2010-2015), which stresses the three basic elements, namely education, economy and unity (3P).
The purpose of this seminar is to provide opportunities for co-operatives to explore business opportunities (business matching) through business partnerships. Five successful co-operative businesses in Brunei Darussalam, three representatives from Brunei government agencies and a leading exporter of swiflet in Malaysia is expected to deliver a paper at this event.
This seminar is in tandem with BINA’s ongoing effort to support the socio-economic development of the co-operatives members. In hindsight, co-operative business activities carried on in this country revolves around the small and medium-scale environment such as gas stations, transportation services, retail, agriculture, food and hospitality. Therefore, any businesses venturing into new dimensions need to be resilient, competitive, viable and sustainable in line with global business climate.
The one day seminar is intended to catalyse the development of cooperative businesses. Although, co-operative sector is based in inculcating the values of social life among its members rather than purely on economic, any type of businesses would face the daunting challenge given the nature of the global business climate and the ever-increasing competitiveness. Consequently, Co-operative leaders need to put more emphasis in their strides to chart new dimension, not just being swift in decision-making processes, but equally important is being smart in formulating new ideas and strategies in the context of venturing into new businesses.
A good analysis of the current market would enable the co-operative leaders to gain a strong foundation towards sustaining their businesses and ultimately, contributing to the socio-economic growth of the nation.