Silk threads hang from a handloom in a workshop at night in India. (Photographer: Dhiraj Singh/Bloomberg)

MSME Ministry To Set Up Export Promotion Cell

The Ministry of Micro Small and Medium Enterprises is looking to set up an export promotion cell this year to coordinate with other departments and export promotion councils for increasing shipments of products like khadi, leather and coir, and identify clusters that can export directly or through aggregators, a top official said.

The move will further streamline strategies aimed at boosting exports from micro, small and medium enterprises, considered a powerful engine of the country’s economic growth, contributing around 45 per cent of the overall shipments from India.

“We are trying (that) in our ministry there should be a cell which is going to coordinate and how we can bring in value and in every sector should also identify potential clusters,” Secretary in the MSME Ministry AK Panda told PTI in an interview.

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According to him, the cell once established should identify potential clusters which can start exporting directly or through aggregators and export houses with the help of export promotion councils, adding “this is what we are going to do this year”.

Sharing his outlook for coir and khadi exports, the MSME secretary said while shipments from the Coir Board stood at Rs 2,500 crore in 2017-18, there is a “tremendous potential” in the coir sector.

Besides, he said, the ministry was expecting a “quantum jump” in the exports by the Khadi and Village Industries Commission this year from only around Rs 200 crore earlier, as they are expected to rise substantially.

MSMEs account for about 85-90 per cent of leather exports, Panda said. According to estimates, MSMEs contribute around 6.11 per cent to India’s manufacturing GDP, 24.63 per cent to the GDP from service activities and 33.4 per cent to the manufacturing output.

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