Iranian Cooperative Diversity

National Central Cooperative Organization (Non-Employee Urban Cooperatives)

In order to promote cooperative principles throughout the country, to formulate relevant legislation and to meet cooperative requirements to appropriate facilities, National Central Cooperative Organization was founded in May 1967. It joined Ministry of Cooperatives and Rural Affairs in 1956 and upon dissolution of this ministry, it went under supervision of Ministry of Commerce. By establishment of Ministry of Cooperatives in 1991 and on the strength of Cooperative Sector Law, approved in September 1991, the organization affiliated to Ministry of Cooperatives. 

Number of Cooperative societies and unions associated to National Central Cooperative Organization up to February 1979, the beginning of Islamic Revolution, was as follows:

a.       Cooperative Societies: Total number of cooperatives affiliate to National Central Cooperative Organization, such as consumer, housing, credit, distribution, non-employee urban services, was 1340 societies with a membership exceeding to 803,893 by February 1979.

b.      Cooperative Unions: There were 20 non-employee urban cooperative unions with a membership of 369 cooperatives by February 1979.

Central Organization for Rural Cooperatives (CORC)

Established in 1967 in effect of certain articles of the Act on Land Reforms approved in 1962, CORC’s objectives and tasks could be outlined as follows:

a.       Education of cooperative principles and training supervisory board for directing members of cooperative societies in rural areas.

b.      Credit supply programs for cooperatives aiming at increasing farmers’ products and income as well as marketing and sales of farmers yield.

c.       Communication with national consumer cooperatives, also with concerned international organizations.

During the past years, CORC has been supervised by Ministry of Agriculture. In February 1979, it covered a total of 2,939 rural cooperatives with a membership of 3,010,202.

Number of rural cooperative unions by February 1979 was 153 with cooperative membership of 2,923. 

Employees Cooperative Societies

Employees Cooperatives including labor and producer, consumer, housing and credit were established since 1967 and the number of these societies exceeded to 1,673 and membership of 423,840 by February 1979, for instance an employee cooperative union with 510 cooperative members was registered in the same year.

Rural Producer Cooperatives

Producer cooperatives came into existence after land distribution operation for integration of national lands, the law of which was approved in 1970.

The government established rural producer cooperatives in order to boost up farmer yields per unit area, while preserving farmers’ individual ownership on land lots, enhancement of cultivation plans, optimum use of water and soil resources and farmers’ income increase.

Number of rural producer cooperatives was 39 including 258 villages and farms with 11,200 land owners and total surrounded surface area of 99,546 hectares.