Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday said the Government’s top priority is to create a conducive environment for the growth of entrepreneurs in the State. He was speaking at the inaugural function of the ninth Entrepreneurs’ Week organised by the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Department.
The function coincided with the birth anniversary of former chief minister Biju Patnaik who is known for pioneering entrepreneurial growth in the State.
More than 1.93 million people are engaged in MSMEs across the State, making it the second largest employment generator after agriculture.
Patnaik mentioned that major problem for entrepreneurs is non-availability of credit. “The fourth MSME census shows that around 85 per cent of MSME entrepreneurs are unable to get the credit needed for their ventures. I insist that the financial institutions should work towards facilitating credit for them,” said Patnaik.
Lack of technical know-how and poor marketing facilities are some of the other issues faced by the entrepreneurs.The State Government has issued instructions to MSME Department to formulate specific guidelines that would facilitate marketing of their products as it is crucial for their survival.
Around 74 per cent of MSMEs are located in rural areas and the sector has seen a significant growth in the past few years. It is mostly the women and marginal population who work in these MSMEs.
Stating that awareness about the importance of MSMEs has been increasing, Industries and Excise Minister Niranjan Pujari said among all MSMEs, State Government has prioritised the development of the food processing industry.
During the week-long programme, thematic discussions, open house debates on topics related to entrepreneurship, seminars and workshops on development of MSMEs will be conducted throughout the 30 districts of the State. MSME Minister Damodar Rout and Finance Minister Prasanna Acharya were also present at the event.