FUNDING

Saccos set to borrow from one another

The Sh100 billion Central liquidity fund will pave way for saccos to borrow money from one another

In Summary

• Co-operative movement in Kenya is rated number one in Africa with over 23,000 registered co-operative societies.

• The movement has a membership of about 14 million people and employs more than 500,000 Kenyans directly and another 1.5 million indirectly.

Cooperatives Alliance of Kenya chairman Daniel Marube.
Cooperatives Alliance of Kenya chairman Daniel Marube.
Image: FILE

Saccos in Kenya could soon borrow  from one another if Cabinet and Parliament approve a new  policy.

The policy seeks the formation of a Central Liquidity Fund worth Sh100 billion from which saccos can draw.

Agriculture and Cooperative Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya said  like other financial institutions, saccos operate in a highly dynamic and competitive financial sector dominated by commercial banks, micro finance and other financial players.

He said the Ministry is at an advanced stage of establishing the fundto facilitate inter-Sacco borrowing and enable cooperatives  participate in the National Payment Systems.

Munya said a policy is already in place and will be forwarded to the Cabinet next week and if approved, will go to Parliament for formulation into  law.

He said saccos in Kenya have mobilised members’ savings and deposits of over Sh800 billion, with an Asset Base exceeding Sh1 trillion and loan portfolio of more than Sh700 billion as at December  2019.

“Saccos continue to be the best vehicle to intermediate between savings and investments in addition to encouraging their members to embrace a savings culture,” said the CS.

He said ministry has  established the SACCO Societies Fraud Investigation Unit within  the Sacco Societies Regulatory Authority to ensure fraud cases are speedily handled.

“In order to promote professionalism and business ethics among co-operative practitioners, the Ministry has facilitated the establishment and registration of a professional body for co-operators known as Kenya Society of Professional Co-operators-KSPC,” said Munya.

Commissioner of Co-operatives Geoffrey Njang'ombe, said 52 deposit taking saccos and others that offer front office services have expressed interest.

They  will be required to pay a subscription fee to join the  fun which will be registered as a cooperative

Cooperative Alliance of Kenya chief executive officer Daniel Marube said under the liquidity fund, saccos with excess cash can lend to others at affordable interest rates.

“Cooperative societies are growing and the demand for credit and loans from members is also growing from time to time," said Marube.

According to the Ministry,  Kenya's co-operative movement is rated top in Africa with over 23,000 registered co-operative societies.

The membership stands at close to 14 million and with more than 500,000 Kenyans employed directly and another 1.5 million indirectly.