The Union government is aware of the problems faced by Micro, Small and Medium-scale Enterprises (MSMEs) because of high raw material prices and is working on solutions for the same, Minister of State for MSMEs Banu Pratap Singh Verma said here on Thursday.
Speaking to the media on the sidelines of Coir Conclave, organised by the Coir Board and the Ministry of MSMEs, he said the government is discussing the issue of high raw material prices that is hurting the MSMEs. The government had announced a relief package for MSMEs that was hit by the pandemic. The contribution of MSMEs to the country’s GDP and exports is significant, he said.
On cluster initiatives, the Minister said Tamil Nadu is one of the leading hubs for the coir industry. The government planned to do more for the coir cluster in the State. Of the 27 coir cluster in the State, 14 were in Tamil Nadu.
Earlier, Union Minister for MSMEs Narayan Rane, who inaugurated “Enterprise India National Coir Conclave 2022”, said coir had immense potential and could play an important role in enhancing exports and adding to the share of MSMEs in the GDP. The industry provided employment to more than seven lakh people in the rural areas of the coconut growing States. Almost 80% of these artisans were women. Production of coir products was largely confined to the Southern States. “The Ministry of MSME intends to promote coir production in other States and towards this, Government of India has taken numerous initiatives to popularise the use of coir for consumer and industrial use, especially as a replacement for many non-degradable products,” he said.
Mr. Verma added that this event was held to bring about a co-ordinated effort between the State and Central governments to promote production of coir and coir products and to identify new areas of application of coir. It would provide a permanent base for the Central and the State governments concerned to work in a coordinated manner for the promotion of the coir industry.
Minister for Rural Industries, Tamil Nadu, T.M. Anbarasan, said the State has 5,000 coir units in the MSME sector and several cooperative societies. The State government extended ₹1.17 crore last financial year as marketing support. There are nine coir clusters in the State and three more are coming up at a cost of ₹19.73 crore.
As many as 27 units received 44 awards for coir and coir products. The Coir Board released new coir products such as coir composite fruit bowl, geo-textile shadow lamp, coir buttons, auto mirror covers made of coir, flat rectangular tray, and certificate holder. It also released the Manual of Technologies for Coir and books on coir pith, geo-textiles and coir floor furnishing.