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'Conducive environment needed for SMEs to address problems'

Written by: Staff

Bangalore, July 23 (UNI) A conducive environment need to created for nearly five million Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the country to enable it address its problems, Karnataka State Industrial Investment and Development Corporation Limited Chairperson and Managing Director Sobha Nambisan has said.

Speaking at a seminar on ''Opportunities and Challenges for SMEs, a programme for owners, CEOs and senior Managers of SMEs, here yesterday, she said SMEs deserved encouragement as they play a pivotal role in the country's socio-economic development.

She said the common problems faced by the SMEs included low volume of production and poor quality of products compared to MNCs, first generation entrepreneurs with limited financial resources, lack of timely availability of working capital, low levels of R and D and isolation from technology hubs.

Stating that post-liberalisation era in the Indian economy had enhanced opportunities and challenges for SMEs, Ms Nambisan said the ultimate objective in formulation of promotional policies was to enhance SMEs' capacity to grow so that they become viable units.

She opined that in the present scenario of globalisation and liberalisation, strong linkages need to be promoted not only between technolgoy support institutions and SMEs but also between SMEs for horizontal transfer of technologies. Access to advanced technologies and assistance in its adoption was crucial to building up Indigenous Technological Capacity to face international competition, she added.

Ms Nambisan said several SME sectors in the country need to be technologically upgraded, including leather, building materials light engineering, electrical, telecommunication, chemicals, food processing and ceramics.

She said with the enactment of Karnataka Industries (Facilitation) Act 2002, the regulatory framework for promotion of industrial development and facilitation of new investments had been simplified and SMEs could confidently obtain speedy investment clearance through single window mechanism.

She said any exrecise to enhance the competitiveness of SMEs would have to address issues that could be broadly classified under the genric heads of a condcive policy framework, knowlege acquisition and diessemination, technology demonstration and networking and financing and instituional support systems. In each of the categories, the barriers must be clearly identified and enabling strategies developed so that the SMEs could build up the sutainability to compete and bcome responsive to the needs of the people and the society.

The seminar was jointly organised by Erin Foundation, Bangalore, and supported by KSIIC, KSFC and Small Industries Development Bank of India.

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