The Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector has better adaptability to cater to the export market due to its smaller size and can adapt to market change sooner said Union Minister of Commerce and Industry & Railways, Piyush Goyal, during a meeting held in New Delhi yesterday to discuss with MSME associations various industry issues and examine the steps that may be taken to resolve them.
Many issues pertaining to the MSME sector were put up for discussion with the Commerce and Industry Minister by MSMEs through the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM), SME Chamber of India and PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
The most important issues that were discussed in the meeting included the problem faced by SME units in accessing credit from banks, delay in payments from Public Sector Units and Government departments, the issue of GST refund, the dearth of skilled manpower in the SME sector and the issue of differing wages in States across the country.
The MSME sector in India employs over 100 million people and accounts for 45% of manufacturing output and more than 40% of the country’s exports. With 63.4 million units throughout the country, MSMEs contribute around 6.11% of the manufacturing GDP and 24.63% of the GDP from service activities.
Commerce and Industry Minister directed Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) and the Credit Guarantee Funds Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) to set up a framework that will enable them to process loans to SME units faster and also provide insurance cover to the SME exporters.
Commerce and Industry Minister urged the SME sector manufacturers to produce high quality goods following international standards so that exports from the SME sector may become a part of the global value chain.
On the issue of delayed payments, Commerce and Industry Minister examined the possibility of big companies making full payment to SMEs against delivery so that working capital of SME units are not blocked.
In order to mainstream the 8 million Indian women who have started and are running their own businesses Minister directed that the Government e-Marketplace may handhold the women led SMEs and onboard these enterprises on the GeM portal.
Commerce and Industry Minister assured the SME sector that the Government will give all support and help in the skilling of manpower required for the sector and in all other areas that requires intervention of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry.