Last Saturday, the Confederation of Indian Industry(CII), Southern region organized a conference on ‘Entrepreneurs – catalysts of Growth’, as a part the annual regional meeting. Union Minister Dr. D Purandeswari and Mr. Adi Godrej gave away the awards to the winners of the CII Emerging Entrepreneurs Awards 2012. All the attendee dignitaries were highly encouraging of entrepreneurship and did not tire listing the benefits of entrepreneurship as a change agent in the development of the country.
Mr. G V Sanjay Reddy, Chairman, CII Southern Region set the tone about entrepreneurship at the event. He pointed out for entrepreneurship to flourish in India there is a need to create an enabling ecosystem which supports entrepreneurial activity. “Today’s youth are self driven and blessed with innovative ideas – they only need a platform to showcase their talent which would help them to earn recognition and opportunity to set up new business.” he said.
Adi Godrej, President, CII, in his keynote address, pointed out how entrepreneurs have been an intrinsic part of India since pre-historic days. “Adventurous risk-takers crossed the Indian Ocean to reach distant lands. These early entrepreneurs imprinted their cultural footprints in regions as diverse as Arabia, Africa and South East Asia,” said Mr. Godrej.
As the global economy and the Indian economy faces slow down, entrepreneurs are looked upon as a hope to steer it out of the red. MSMEs in India are the second largest employer after agriculture giving employment to over 70 million people in 30 million different units. Mr. Godrej highlighted the need to improve the ease of doing business in India, which currently is an abysmal 132 out of total 183 countries. The only way to remove these hiccups is to introduce policy changes that will help move the country up the value chain and focus on growth of new companies.
These MSMEs have to be made aware of the use of technology that will help them go green, use efficient technologies and minimize resources utilization. Entrepreneurship and inclusive growth go hand-in-hand and startups would benefit by working together, explained Mr. Godrej. He also recommended changes in the current labor laws to incentivize entrepreneurship and train students in secondary school on the subject.
At the inaugural ceremony of the conference, Dr. D Purandeswari, Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, Government of India, said “India is a land of ideas. Young Entrepreneurs will convert the land of ideas to a land of opportunity”. The Union Minister emphasized that entrepreneurs are confident with the knowledge that they will make their businesses succeed and exude confidence in everything they do.
Dr. Purandeswari pointed out the dearth of quality people in industry, which demands high level of entrepreneurship. If these areas are fixed, then it can help boost growth of Indian economy and thereby put the Indian economy on a growth path, she said. The role of entrepreneurship is not only about creation of enterprise but also includes creation of the capacity to produce wealth, jobs and income, which are the most direct indicators of economic development. “In fact, underdevelopment is not because of the lack of natural resources but because of the absence or inadequate supply of entrepreneurs. Economic growth is the outcome of entrepreneurial endeavors”, she emphasized.
Mr. B Santhanam, Deputy Chairman, CII Southern Region delivered the concluding remarks.
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