With only two months left until the Federal election in Australia, the Business Council of Co-operatives and Mutuals (BCCM) is suggesting a number of policy changes to political parties in the country.
BBCM is suggesting reducing red-tape to enable more start-up businesses to register as co-operatives and mutuals. “Recognising co-operative and mutual enterprises and ensuring that these structures are as accessible in the business registration process as any other corporate structure is a very simple way to add to resilience and diversity in the economy,” says Melina Morrison, chief executive of BCCM. The organisation is also calling for further awareness raising to ensure beneficiaries of National Disability Insurance Scheme and indigenous communities are informed of this option and provided with opportunities to join or establish co-operatives that meet their specific needs.
BCCM is also calling for a specific focus on co-operatives and mutuals to address the need for social housing. Another problem mutuals face is the limited ability to raise external funds. BCCM suggests looking at investment rules that currently apply in Canada and the UK as a model of how to unlock member investment in mutual in Australia. Read more on BCCM’s website.
Photo: Melina Morrison, BCCM chief executive