Co-operatives reform aims to cut red tape, boost regional economies

Draft laws aimed at reducing red tape and associated business costs for co-operatives have been introduced in State Parliament.

Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Yvette D’Ath said the draft laws would benefit smaller co-operatives, including co-operatives in regional Queensland.

“The Palaszczuk Government recognises the substantial contribution Queensland co-operatives make to our economy and communities,” Mrs D’Ath said.

“Co-operatives operate in a diverse range of industries in Queensland including agriculture and fishing, dairy, water supply, health services, grocery and hardware supplies, recycling, and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts.

“That’s why we’re seeking to modernise and improve the regulatory framework for co-operatives through nationally-harmonised co-operatives legislation.

“The Bill before State Parliament simplifies the financial reporting and auditing requirements and reduces costs for small co-operatives.

“It modernises directors’ and officers’ duties and provides a new way for co-operatives to raise funds

“The draft laws will also assist co-operatives wanting to do business across state or territory borders as they will no longer have to register in each jurisdiction.

“These are important reforms which will support the ongoing viability of Queensland co-operatives.”

The Co-operatives National Law Bill 2020 seeks to repeal Queensland’s current Cooperatives Act 1997, and in its place, apply the Co-operatives National Law and its regulations as a law of Queensland.

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