India to create 50 cr skilled manpower by 2020; PM

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New Delhi, Aug 30 (UNI) Lauding micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) sector for its contribution to the national economy and employment generation, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said this sector, which accounts for 45 per cent of the country's manufacturing and 40 per cent of its exports, also gives employment to over 4.2 crore people.

Congratulating the award winning entrepreneurs at a function here, he said with one of the youngest populations in the world, India has the capacity to create 50 crore skilled and trained technicians by 2020 and claim a fourth of the global workforce.

Stating that this ambitious goal can be realised through coordinated action by governments, industries, financial and training institutions, Dr Singh said he had written to chief ministers to allow use of buildings of high schools and above after study hours to agencies and groups engaged in skill development mission.

Also laudhing banking community in more than doubling the credit flow from Rs 67,000 crore to Rs 1,48,000 crore since 2005 to the MSME sector, the economist Prime Minister also urged it to find innovative ways of making skill acquisition by the youth a bankable proposition.

Speaking on the occasion, Union Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Mahabir Prasad said MSME sector recorded a growth rate of 13 per cent, three per cent more than the overall industrial growth, in 2007-08.

He said 1.8 lakh people were given skill development training in 2007-08, double than the previous year, by various organisations under his ministry.

The Minister said they have decided to train 5 lakh people every year by the end of 11th Plan under skill development programme.

He said 37 lakh new employment opportunities would be created under the newly launched Prime Minister's Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) in rural and urban areas of the country. This would be achieved by establishing micro enterprises with Central assistance of Rs 4,735, he said, adding it would lead to an investment of about Rs 15,000 crore.

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