Daily The Hindu Editorial vocabulary (28-06-2019)
The micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sector in India is not only a key engine of growth, contributing more than 28% of the GDP and about 45% to manufacturing output. It is also a true reflection of economics where people really matter. Providing employment to about 111 million people, the sector’s health is crucial to the economy’s vitality (जीवन शक्ति power of life) and society’s well being. An expert committee constituted by the Reserve Bank of India has in this context submitted a substantially germane (उचित) study on the issues bedeviling (सताना prosecute, torture) MSMEs and made a fairly exhaustive set of recommendations to redress them. The panel is emphatic (ज़ोरदार) that the policy environment needs to be urgently refocused. To that end, it is imperative (अनिवार्य) that the thrust (जोर) of the enabling legislation — a 13-year-old law, the MSME Development Act, 2006 — be changed to prioritise market facilitation and ease of doing business. Observing that many Indian start-ups that are at the forefront (सबसे आगे) of innovation are drawn to look overseas, given the conducive (सहायक) business environment and the availability of infrastructure and exit policies, the experts suggest that a new law ought to (करना चाहिए) address the sector’s biggest bottlenecks (बाधाओं), including access to credit and risk capital. A substantial part of the study is justifiably devoted to reimagining solutions to improve credit flow to MSMEs. For instance, the experts recommend repurposing the Small Industries Development Bank of India. In its expanded role, it is envisaged (परिकल्पना की गई) that the SIDBI could not only deepen credit markets for MSMEs in under-served regions by being a provider of comfort to lenders including NBFCs and micro-finance institutions, but also become a market-maker for SME debt.