[TechSparks 2020] FM Nirmala Sitharaman 'closely monitoring' progress of MSMEs; says they will help India become Aatmanirbhar Bharat
MSMEs are the growth engine of India's economy, and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Wednesay said she was "closely monitoring" their progress.
On Day 3 of TechSparks 2020, YourStory's flagship event and India's largest and most influential tech-entrepreneurship conference, the Finance Minister spoke about how the MSMEs sector was emerging from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and how it would play an important role in helping India achieve the goal of becoming Aatmanirbhar Bharat, or a self-sufficient economy.
Sitharaman added that India's strength in component manufacturing had led it to become one of the largest manufacturers of mobile phones in the world. She said India produces some of the best components for auto, electronic, and aerospace industries, and now also has access to the global value chain.
On how she was monitoring the progress of this sector, she said, "I kept giving data to private and public sector banks, which are reaching out to MSMEs. In this, banks will not be the choosers. They will blanket call all customers, send them SMSs; the right to refusal for this will be with customers, and not with banks."
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in conversation with Shradha Sharma, Founder and CEO of YourStory
She said that she was "equally monitoring" what the MSME ministry was doing to give subordinate debts to company partners of stressed MSMEs.
In May, the Finance Minister announced a slew of initiatives for MSMEs under the Rs 20 lakh crore Aatmanirbhar Bharat stimulus package.
The one scheme that stood out was the Rs 3 lakh crore collateral-free loan scheme. Four months on, Rs 1.93 lakh crore worth of loans have been sanctioned and Rs 1.46 lakh crore have been disbursed. "The monitoring has been happening steadily."
The MSME sector in India is considered the backbone of the Indian economy. It contributes about 30 percent to India's growth and is also responsible for creating large-scale employment.
TechSparks - YourStory's annual flagship event - has been India's largest and most important technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship summit for over a decade, bringing together entrepreneurs, policymakers, technologists, investors, mentors, and business leaders for stories, conversations, collaborations, and connections that matter. As TechSparks 2020 goes all virtual and global in its 11th edition, we want to thank you for the tremendous support we've received from all of you throughout our journey and give a huge shoutout to our sponsors of TechSparks 2020.