India to manufacture low-cost medical devices: Gadkari
Union MSME minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday said his department plans to set up five parks to manufacture low-cost medical devices in the country.
He also informed about a project being carried out under the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) to manufacture 'Cochlear implant' equipment.
The equipment will be available at 50 per cent of its cost to people soon, Gadkari said at the annual conference of the Association Otolaryngologists of India here.
This Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSME) ministry is working on manufacturing low-cost medical devices in the country itself so that poor people could benefit out of it.
The ministry will be setting up five parks to manufacture medical devices in India, out of which one has already started in Vishakapatanam.
"Similarly, a MRI machine, which used to cost Rs 6.50 crore a piece, is now available for Rs 58 lakh after we started manufacturing it," he said.
In 2019, the country had imported medical devices worth Rs 38,837.28 crore.
Earlier in November 2019, Nitin Gadkari stated that the government is working on two policies to increase MSME exports and bring down imports by encouraging local production.
While addressing the gathering at Small Micro Enterprise (SME) conference at Nagpur, Gadkari mentioned that the MSME sector has 29 percent contribution in country's growth and 48 percent of export is done through MSMEs. Similarly, about 10-11 crore jobs have been created in MSMEs.
"The government is working on two policies. Firstly on the industries which are into export business - how to support and increase their export," the minister said.
The leather industry has a total turnover of Rs 1,40,000 crore of which Rs 80,000 crore to Rs 90,000 crore is domestic and around Rs 45,000-50,000 crore is from export.
"I have suggested them on working on modernisation, upgradation, product designing, and how to reduce the cost of production and improve quality, so that our share increases in the international market. We are working on a policy on how to strengthen export business," Gadkari said.
He also said that the government is working on policy to increase indigenous production of products that are being imported.
(Disclaimer: Additional background information has been added to this PTI copy for context)