NITI Aayog extends deadline for proposals on linking ecommerce with SMEs till May 15
Niti Aayog on Monday extended the deadline till May 15 for submission of expressions of interest (EoI) by institutions and organisations for a research study on the integration of small businesses and traders on ecommerce platforms.
In the EOI floated on March 16, the government think-tank had said ecommerce, as a medium, has been able to multiply both upstream and downstream integration possibilities for a seller or a service provider.
The submission of EOI was to be made in 30 days, but now it could be done by May 15, the Aayog said in a public notice.
"Although growing at an unprecedented rate, it has not succeeded to integrate the large proportion of Indian MSME sellers on their marketplaces," it said.
NITI Aayog noted that all-inclusive platforms will truly enable play of market forces, resulting in job creation, increased availability of diverse and cheaper products/services, import substitution, and growth of MSME sector.
The scope of the study should include roadmap for integration of SMEs across India on ecommerce platforms by providing universal ecommerce access and its culmination as centralised online repository of Indian SMEs product offerings.
Besides, the focus should be also on evaluation of existing market places managed by various government departments (NSIC Bazar, VLE Bazar, CSE Bazars, GeM) and their revamping to support product and service identification process, digitisation of product and services through cataloguing.
As per the annual report of the Ministry of MSME, India has an estimated 6.4 crore MSMEs.
These MSMEs contribute significantly to the economic and social development of the country by fostering entrepreneurship and generating employment opportunities both at urban as well as rural level, which is only next to the agriculture sector.
The MSMEs are widening their domain across sectors of the economy, producing diverse range of products and services to meet demands of domestic as well as global markets.
The EoI further said the study would cover evaluation of entire ecosystem through research and holding consultations with various stakeholders.
"This would also involve analysis of ecommerce policies globally and evaluation on existence of such platform working currently in any jurisdiction," it said.