Ziphakamise co-op gets banking licence from Reserve Bank

Friday, December 8, 2017

The Reserve Bank has announced the issuing of a cooperative banking licence to Ziphakamise Savings and Credit Co-operative (SACCO).

“The South African Reserve Bank (SARB) is pleased to announce the issuing of another co-operative banking licence. The licence is the first co-operative banking licence to be issued since 2011,” said the central bank on Thursday.

SACCO has expanded the beneficiaries of its services from the employees of Bell Equipment to now include the Community of Umhlathuze in KwaZulu-Natal. Prior to registration with the Reserve Bank, the institution was regulated under the exemption notice administered by the Co-operative Banks Development Agency (CBDA).

South Africa has two co-operative banks, OSK Koöperatiewe Bank and Ditsobotla Primary Savings and Credit Cooperative Bank, which were both registered in 2011.

Ditsobotla was registered as a co-operative bank with CBDA in 2011 and transferred to SARB in 2014 when the supervision function was transferred from the agency.

SACCO became eligible to apply for registration as a co-operative bank after reaching the membership and deposits of 200 and R1 million, respectively. As of 31 June 2017, the SACCO reflected 618 members and a deposit of R4 million.

The co-operative banking licence is one of three types of licences that the current legislative framework makes provision for.

A co-operative bank licence entails an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic and social needs and aspirations through a jointly owned and democratically controlled enterprise organised and operated on co-operative principles, whose members are:

  • employed by a common employer or who are employed within the same business district; or
  • have common membership in an association or organisation, including a religious, social, cooperative, labour or educational group; or
  • Reside within the same defined community or geographical area.

The legal designation and recognition of the application requires that the applicant be registered as such by the Reserve Bank through the Supervisor of Co-operative Banks in the case of co-operative banks.

For application to be registered as a co-operative bank, the applicant must be registered as a co-operative financial institution with 200 or more members and holding member’s deposits of R1 million or more.

Applications must be submitted (and are assessed) in accordance with the form, content and criteria as prescribed in terms of the Co-operative Banks Act.

The other two types of licences are the commercial bank licence and the mutual bank licence. -

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