Duterte signs law creating Cooperative Development Authority

Published August 14, 2019, 5:20 PM

by Gabriela Baron & Minka Klaudia Tiangco

By Genalyn Kabiling

A measure reorganizing and strengthening the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA) has been signed into law by President Duterte.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte signs the Republic Act 11033 'Converting the Davao Oriental State College of Science and Technology into a State University' and Republic Act 11032 or 'Ease of Doing Business Act' during the ceremonial enactment at Malacañan Palace on May 28, 2018. Joining the President are Senate President Vicente Sotto III and House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez. ROBINSON NIÑAL JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Republic Act No. 11364, also known as the “Cooperative Development Authority Charter of 2019, aims to promote the viability and growth of cooperatives as instruments of equitable, social justice, and economic development.

“The State recognizes cooperatives as associations organized for the economic and social betterment of their members, operating business enterprises based on mutual aid, and founded upon international accepted cooperative principles and practices,” the law read.

“The State also recognizes the CDA as primarily responsible for the institutional development and regulation of cooperatives through partnership with the cooperative sectors and the academe,” it added.

Under the new law, the CDA is authorized to craft rules and regulations to ensure effective and sound operation of cooperatives; formulate and implement comprehensive plans on cooperative development; register cooperatives; authorize establishment of branches and satellite offices of cooperatives; exercise supervision and jurisdiction over cooperatives; and require submission of annual reports and financial statements.

It is also mandated to create an information system on cooperatives, issue guidelines on use of funds, collect fees in performance of registration and regulatory functions, grant awards and incentives, and conduct regular inspection of cooperatives.

The CDA, which will be an attached agency of the Department of Trade and Industry, will have a board of directors. It will be composed of a chairperson with the rank of undersecretary and six members of the board, all with a term of six years without reappointment.  The board will be responsible for the policy formulation, strategic planning and direction setting of the agency.

The Administrator of the CDA will be appointed by the President as recommended by the board of directors who will have a rank of an Assistant Secretary.  The administrator will execute and administer the policies, decisions, orders and resolutions approved by the board and shall have general executive direction and supervision of the work and operation of the CDA.

The law mandated the CDA to furnish the Bureau of Internal Revenue , local government units and other concerned government agencies a list of duly registered cooperations for processing tax exemptions.

The law also included provisions on settlement of disputes among cooperatives, training standards for cooperative officers and members, and partnership with the cooperative sector. The history, values, principles and practices of cooperative will also be part of the school curriculum, according to the new law.

The promotion and development of agricultural, agrarian and aqua cooperatives shall also be a priority program of the CDA to ensure food security and reduce rural poverty.  It will also pursue programs to promote and develop cooperative banks.