Anna University of Technology – Madurai V-C says they are backbone of economy

Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, which account for 45 per cent of India's manufacturing output and 40 per cent of exports, are the backbone of the nation's economy and the country was able to weather global economic recession with little effect mainly due to the MSMEs, according to R. Murugesan, Vice-Chancellor of Anna University of Technology (AUT) – Madurai.

He was addressing the inaugural of National Conference on Entrepreneurship and Management 2011 organised here on Friday by AUT - Madurai. The sector employed over 60 million people through its 26 million enterprises across the country.

The latest Union Budget increased the allocation for MSME sector from Rs.2,400 crore to Rs.2,700 crore, a hike of 12.5 per cent. The Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) has been allocated Rs.5,000 crore, a 20 per cent increment over the previous fiscal.

The university's motto, the Vice-Chancellor said, was to turn students into job generators rather than job seekers. The government and private sector cannot generate employment for all the 40 crore youngsters in the country. Over five lakh engineers graduated across the country every year. Tamil Nadu alone had 495 engineering colleges with another 125 about to be started, informed Dr. Murugesan.

M. Kutralingam, Principal Secretary, Department of MSMEs, Government of Tamil Nadu, said that economy would continue to grow at 8 per cent a year, which would result in a huge demand for products and services.

Tamil Nadu alone turned out 1.5 lakh engineers every year. They have to become entrepreneurs and become job providers. Globalisation had created opportunities through outsourcing, he said.

B.T. Bangera, Managing Director, Hi-Tech Arai, said that such courses would inculcate entrepreneurship among students. Risk taking was vital for entrepreneurship along with a passion for this venture.

K. Aludiapillai, former Secretary to the State Government, KokulaKrisna Hari, Techno Forum, Puducherry, R. Jayaraman, Head, Department of Entrepreneurship Studies, Madurai Kamaraj University, C. Swarnalatha, Conference Organising secretary, E.P. Perumal Pillai, AUT Registrar, spoke.