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From Our Special Correspondent
GUWAHATI: The Centre has earmarked around Rs 1,000 crore for implementation of various schemes for micro small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in the Northeast for the current financial year.
Announcing this before reporters on Monday, M Sreenivasulu, the director of MSME – Development Institute here informed that MSMEs are significantly present in all states and Union Territories and are the second largest employer after agriculture in the country.
Sreenivasulu said that despite various welfare schemes run by the MSME ministry, it has been found that there has been lack of awareness of the schemes up to the grassroots level which has prevented the benefits earmarked by the government from reaching the exact target group.
“MSME-DI has primarily engaged in the implementation of various schemes of the MSME ministry towards encouragement of self-employment among unemployed youths as well as promotion and development of the MSME sector in the region.’’
‘‘The basic objectives of the schemes are to alleviate poverty and unemployment by setting up micro and small scale manufacturing, service or business enterprises,” he said.
The institute also aims to develop existing MSME units to grow further by way of financial benefits for enhancement of GDP and export turnover of the country.
Sreenivasulu said the schemes of the ministry are central sector schemes in which specific percentage of the budgetary allocation are earmarked for SC, ST and Northeastern region’s population.
He further informed that under Credit Guarantee Fund Scheme (CGFS), loan guarantees are provided to MSEs which in turn result in employment generation.
The director said that the Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) is a major credit-linked subsidy programme aimed at generating self-employment opportunities through establishment of micro-enterprises in the non-farm sector by helping traditional artisans and unemployed youth.
The MSME-DI promotes the development of micro and small enterprises in the states of Assam, Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh through six branch institutes – Tezpur, Silchar, Diphu, Itanagar, Shillong and Tura.