A ONE-DAY workshop on ‘WTO Sensitisation’ was organised jointly by the Small Industries Service Institute (Government of India), Directorate of Industries (MP) and Madhya Pradesh Laghu Udyog Sangh (MPLUS) at Hotel Lake View Ashok in the City recently.
Addressing the session, State Finance Minister Raghavji said the small-scale industries (SSI) sector, despite having limited capital and resources, has made major contributions in the nation’s economy.
Terming the SSI as the country’s backbone, he said it was this sector that provides largest employment. Highlighting the ground realities of SSI sector, Raghavji said as expensive marketing and advertisements play a big role today, SSIs lag behind due to their limited financial resources.
“Big companies use the products manufactured by SSIs and sell them as their own,” he pointed out. Stressing on the survival of SSIs, the Finance Minister said SSIs need to be competitive, qualitative and fittest in this age of fierce competition.
Focussing on WTO guidelines, SISI director J P Nagar said the SSI sector could be competitive in WTO regime provided they are ready to accept change and introduce new technology and go for modernisation.
Small & medium enterprises (SMEs) contribute 35-37 per cent share in the country’s total export and 39 per cent in employment alone, he said adding the sector needs to work on how to sell its products independently, with a competitive edge abroad. Madhya Pradesh Laghu Udyog Sangh president Dr R S Goswami said a decade back there was a notion that the SSIs thrive on government subsidies and concessions, and its products were below standards.
“But there has been a dramatic change in scenario, as presently SSI products are accepted for its quality and better productivity,” he added. Goswami urged the Finance Minister to simplify the procedures in the policy so that SSIs could function without any impediment. MPLUS secretary general Vipin Jain, in his address, compiled the session, focussing on the importance of WTO and functioning in its regime.