VIJAYAWADA: Here is an opportunity for MSMEs in the region to earn more profits by way of energy savings, and to make it happen, soft loans for procurement of energy-efficient machinery in different sectors are being offered by the Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) - MSME Energy-Saving Project (Phase III).
An awareness programme was organised for MSMEs in Vijayawada region with the help of Vijayawada Chamber of Commerce and Industry here Monday. In the first two phases of the programme implemented across the country, 60 billion Japanese yen, that is `3,000 crore was disbursed as loans in the last six years. In the third phase, spread over three years, `1,500 crore worth of loans will be extended to the interested parties.
According to Jayakrishnan P Nair of PricewaterhouseCoopers Private Limited representing JICA, in the first phase, 2,676 units were financed while it was 1,839 units in the second phase. “By replacing or retrofitting their machinery with energy-efficient ones through loans provided by SIDBI under MSME Energy-Saving Project, a total energy of 771.2 million units was saved. Translated into money, it means a lot,” he said.
Under the project, some 700 technologies have been identified and the units related to them have been shortlisted. “Any industry particularly MSMEs cannot make cuts on human resources or other heads, which puts a burden on them given the increasing expenditure related to raw material. But, by saving on power consumption, overhead charges in that regard can be minimised. Moreover, the energy-efficient machinery means more work in less time, that is, more productivity and more profit,” Nair explained.
SIDBI regional manager G Sampath Kumar said JICA extends third line of credit to SIDBI, which, in turn, finances energy-efficient machinery. As the plant and machinery are to be procured from the identified manufacturers, the processing time is less, he explained. According to him, they are targeting industries from energy-intensive MSME sectors like engineering, plastics, packaging, printing, textiles, food processing, chemicals etc. He said both new and existing units are eligible for the loans.
Presiding over the meeting, Vijayawada Chamber of Commerce and Industry president V Bhaskar Rao said it is a good opportunity for the existing industry to upgrade their plant machinery to improve their efficiency.