Women MSME entrepreneurs up by only 13 per cent in last 8 years  

To change this, FLO has moved forward from giving basic education and health to women to providing them with knowledge, mentorship and a conducive ecosystem to help them become entrepreneurs.  

Published: 27th June 2022 03:10 AM  |   Last Updated: 28th June 2022 09:36 AM   |  A+A-

Image for representational purpose only. (File Photo)

Image for representational purpose only. (File Photo)

Express News Service

BENGALURU:  The annual report released on the International MSME Day on Sunday highlights the gender inequality in the Medium and Small Enterprise (MSME) sector. Despite the consistent growth of the sector, women entrepreneurs owning MSMEs have increased by only 13 per cent in the last eight years.

India has moved forward in celebrating women's entrepreneurship, but the country is still far from achieving the sustainable development goal (SDG) of gender equality. Rashmi Sarita, Executive Director, Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry Ladies Organisation (FLO), said that societal and socio-economic setup is such that the progress of women is relatively slow. To change this, FLO has moved forward from giving basic education and health to women to providing them with knowledge, mentorship and a conducive ecosystem to help them become entrepreneurs.  

A study states that only 3.7 per cent of chief executive officers (CEOs) and managing directors of companies listed at the National Stock Exchange (NSE) are women. Despite India’s growing economy and a working-age population expected to climb to over 800 million by 2050, women account for only 20 per cent of the total labour force in India as of now, she said.

Deepti Sudhindra, the owner of The Jewelry Project, said women from big towns have surely been a changing factor and they have made it independently. However, a huge majority continue to not fall in this category. “Our society is still extremely rigid and rule-bound, and we are still fighting for equality. Women have struggled a lot to reach where they are now,” she added. GenZ and millennials are reaping the benefits of our struggle today, she said.

In the past two to three years, MSMEs have gotten a mixed response due to Covid, but business has picked up again, said Dinesh Rai, former secretary, MSME and founder-chairman of the Alliance of Indian MSMEs. He explained MSMEs are like the backbone of the economy which generates lot of jobs. Setting up of agri-MSMEs will help in reducing migration from rural areas, he added. The government and NGOs have been providing a lot of support to MSMEs with many schemes and interest-free loans.


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