To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of bringing forward legislative proposals to make it easier for cooperatives to access capital; and if he will make a statement.
The Government recognises the value of the co-operative sector, and has taken significant steps to support the growth of co-operatives right across the country. In 2014 the Government passed the Co-operative and Community Benefit Societies Act, to reduce legal complexity for co-operatives and community benefit societies, and at the same time increased the amount of share capital an individual member can put into a co-operative society to £100,000.
HM Treasury officials also hosted a ‘Mutuals Workshop’ with representatives from the sector in 2019, to understand the challenges faced by mutuals, including those related to attracting capital, and how Government can help to address these.
We will continue to consider how we can best support the co-operative sector to reach its potential, and welcome the views of the sector as we do.