Last Updated on Thursday, 09 February 2012 11:04
The First Singapore Co-operativeIt was more than 85 years ago, when the first local co-operative was registered in Singapore. Prior to its current name, Singapore Government Staff Credit Co-operative (SGSCC) Society was registered as Singapore Government Servants’ Co-operative Thrift and Loan Society on 7th October 1925.
SGSSC is open for membership to all staff who are employed in the Civil Services, Statutory Boards and in Government Owned Companies.
Championing the values of co-operation and self-help, the primary reason for the founding of SGSCC, was to encourage thrift, as well as to lend a helping hand to members with small loans at affordable rates to prevent permanent indebtedness.
With over eight decades of experience in the no frills, straightforward safe and sustainable banking business, SGSCC provides the necessary facilities for their members to save for a better future. It stays updated on the current interest rates that the banks and other financial institutions pay their clients, and leverages on economies of scale, so that SGSCC is able to negotiate better returns for their members.
Believing in “Think Big, Start Small”, SGSCC offers members three ways to save that allow the flexibility to withdraw in times of need: Subscription Saving, Specific Deposit Saving, and Fixed/Time Deposit. Members with extra savings may also place their money with the society other their Fixed/Time Deposit to earn higher interests.
Members have trust in SGSCC for handling their money as they know their savings are secured based on the following reasons:
- The society is regulated by The Registry of Co-operative Societies of Singapore (Ministry of Community Development, Youth & Sports)
- The requirements to have accounts audited by qualified auditors.
- The Management Committee is responsible for affairs of the society.
- Full-time staff are ready to serve members queries.
At the same time, SGSCC assists members who are in financial need by granting loans for purposes such as education, renovation and medical, which can help to relieve the financial burden of a typical wage earner whose salary is their only source of income. Loans are made on reasonable terms with lower interest rates (compared to most financial institutions), as well as flexible repayment period of up to 48 months to facilitate better cash flow management.
As a dependable financial support to its members, surpluses of the co-operative are ploughed back to the members with value-added benefits that are catered for the man-in-the-street, such as:
- Dividends. (For example, in 2010, members received 3% dividend in their subscription capital)
- Hospitalisation benefits
- Educational Awards and Bursaries
- Incentive Payment – Recruitment
- Loyalty membership benefit
- Subsidised Tours
- Subsidised Annual Dinner & Dance
With its vision to be a caring and reliable credit co-operative, SGSSC also strives to build a strong bond between members and the Society, so as to instill a sense of belonging to its members.
SGSCC’s new-look quarterly newsletter, ‘SENSE’, sums up, in a nutshell, the sense of achievement and satisfaction that runs passionately among the heartlander-members.
Did you know?
- Credit co-operatives have withstood the test of time – having gone through the financial crisis relatively unscathed, as compared to large for-profit financial institutions.
- The Singapore Government Staff Credit Co-operative (SGSCC) is the first Co-operative to be registered in Singapore, 1925.
- SGSCC has more than 6,000 members to date.