MSME Growth Summit – UP Edition

MSME Growth Summit - UP Edition

MSMEs are the growth engines for the states as they contribute heavily to the state’s economy. However, the COVID pandemic adversely impacted the sector and the economic activities were brought to a halt due to the lockdowns. To aid MSMEs to sail through the tough times, the Government of Uttar Pradesh rolled out various schemes and policies to enhance the ease of doing business in the state. Emphasising the role of MSMEs in making UP Aatmanirbhar, Elets Technomedia with Meta organised a virtual summit – MSME Growth Summit – Uttar Pradesh edition.

“Leverage technology for better sales & customer experience”

Kumar Vineet
Kumar Vineet, Special Secretary (IT), Government of Uttar Pradesh

Kumar Vineet, Special Secretary (IT), Government of Uttar Pradesh said, “The Government of Uttar Pradesh has come up with a program which creates specialised products in crafts. For example, kala namak rice, ancient traditions of zari and zardozi or chikankari, glassware or bed sheet or jaggery, we have tried to get a geographical identification trademark with these products.” Uttar Pradesh is trying to build a technology platform in order to reach out to customers and empower MSMEs to tap into larger markets, he added.

Expressing that the basic motive is the accessibility to market and finance, Vineet said, “The product should be produced in an artistic way so that the packaging is better. We have to get a good geotagging done, with a good display of the products and easy access to marketplaces for the products. Further, we need to improve the interaction between the market players as well the consumers.”

On enhancing the consumer experience, he said, “To enhance the consumer experience and ease communication, we need to create a single window where people can interact one to one… Further, we are leveraging technologies like AI and Internet of Things (IoT) to develop chatbots that further eases consumer communications.” Adding on, he said, “There are three major focus areas why technology plays a key role, firstly, to provide a good, easy and accessible platform to every industry. Secondly, developing an interactive platform between consumer and manufacturer, and the third is enhancing reachability.

“MSMEs are growth engines of the country”

Sarveshwar Shukla
Sarveshwar Shukla, Joint Commissioner, Industries, Government of Uttar Pradesh

Sarveshwar Shukla, Joint Commissioner, Industries, Government of Uttar Pradesh, during his address said that MSME is the growth engine of the country and contributes majorly to the economic activities and turnover. The state of Uttar Pradesh has introduced many schemes like One District One Product (ODOP) for the overall development of the MSME sector in the state.

Speaking on how UP government is aiding MSMEs, he said, “We don’t treat Uttar Pradesh as a state but a small country. In terms of MSMEs, UP ranks first in India. We have come up with enabling policies and are facilitating investors and companies to come set up business in the state. We have Nivesh Mitra which is an online system, where any investor can apply for various clearances, licenses required to set up an organisation in the state. Further, in 2020, the UP government has come up with the MSME Act 2020 that proved to be a game- changer for the MSME sector.”

“We also have monthly grievance redressal meetings under the Udyog Bandhu at the district level. Challenges are resolved through these meetings. The government is making efforts to enhance the ease of doing business in UP in every sector. With vast craftsmanship in every district, the flagship program of ODOP is being successfully implemented in UP. After the success of ODOP, the Centre is also looking ahead to replicate the programme across the country. There are many more schemes in the development phase in the state,” Shukla added.

Optimising Marketing of MSME Products Using ICT

Vidyasagar Singh
Vidyasagar Singh, General Manager, National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC)

While delivering his address, Vidyasagar Singh, General Manager, National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC) highlighted that the MSME sector produces great products with a lot of local artisans working who needs to be highlighted more with the help of technology, ICT and better marketing.

“I feel that one core focus area should be to enhance the penetration of technology in the MSME sector. Such a development could yield better results and empower MSMEs and our local artisans and craftsmen to reach out to bigger markets,” he said.

Singh expressed his interest in collaborating with the Government of UP to come up with better programmes for handholding MSMEs. He said, “NSIC has offices pan India and we offer tailored schemes. So if we join hands we would be able to come up with better schemes. We have contacted state governments for empowering MSMEs and many of them showed interest in developing a web portal to improve the outreach and visibility of the MSMEs in their states.”

He said that the Secretary, MSME Ministry, Government of India has announced that the NSIC’s will be treated as a nodal portal for B2B marketing activities providing support to MSMEs. “We are also planning for a global reach through technology. NSIC has started a new scheme ICT enabled digital services and has already tied up with many leading service providers. With various schemes at a subsidised rate, we are reaching the mass,” he added

E-Commerce: A Boon for MSMEs

Hasan Yaqoob, eCommerce Council CII Uttar Pradesh
Hasan Yaqoob, eCommerce Council CII Uttar Pradesh

Hasan Yaqoob, Chairman, eCommerce Council CII, Uttar Pradesh and Associate Director, Flipkart Group, said, “I would like to bring to your notice that our Hon’ble Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched so many initiatives including but not limited to Skill India, Digital India which are all benefitting MSMEs. Nowadays, due to the rising penetration of e-commerce in the country, the rural belt of India is very much aware of its reach across India, with no or least money required. This is the biggest benefit of e-commerce. It also plays a crucial role in improving the marketing of the products. E-commerce has played a significant role in the national market and e-commerce companies like Flipkart are offering programs wherein we are helping the local artisans and craftsmen in getting free of cost catalogue prepared for their products.”

If a person intends to sell a product on an e-commerce store they have to pay GST by which the government is highly benefitted. Flipkart has come up with a programme called ‘Flipkart Samarth’ to highlight the work of the local artisans of the state of Uttar Pradesh. The entire community of artisans and craftsmen is highly benefitted from the scheme. The Flipkart Samarth has also helped them to become entrepreneurs at a low-cost module. The programme has benefitted various communities including non-governmental organisations (NGOs), people that are specially-abled, and more. We are also in talks with the Uttar Pradesh government for export promotion, he added.

Need for Building Convenient Business Ecosystem for MSMEs

Gaurav Srivastava, EY
Gaurav Srivastava, Senior Consultant, Ernst & Young Global Consulting Services

Gaurav Srivastava, Senior Consultant, Ernst & Young Global Consulting Services said that with an aim to handhold the MSMEs and develop a convenient business ecosystem for the sector; the government has initiated schemes like One District One Product (ODOP), Prime Minister Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP). Policy intervention & convergence is the key to the growth of MSMEs.

“In 2020, the Government of Uttar Pradesh has changed the manufacturing policy where we are assuming the investment should be around Rs 40,000 crore and recently we have changed the startup policy as well, where we are planning 10,000 startups and one incubation centre in each district of the state,” he added.

Expressing his opinion on improving and empowering the business ecosystem in Uttar Pradesh, Srivastava said, “I think like other cities, we should also spend more money on entrepreneurship along with education. We should come up with initiatives on how we can give a comfort zone to small startups. ODOP has helped in the capacity building, with big agencies and has contributed big time to uplift MSMEs in the state.”

While highlighting the enhancement n market reach with the help of e-commerce stores, Srivastava said, “We have sold Rs 1000 crore worth of products only on Flipkart.” In terms of technology, ODOP is doing great work.
“We have to have cluster-wise incubation centres for seamless work. We have to understand at our capacity what we can do to make Uttar Pradesh a profitable business ecosystem for MSMEs,” he said.