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Uttar Pradesh preparing a strong digital foundation for empowering MSMEs

The MSME department has created digital platforms for the entire business value chain of MSMEs. From having a single window system for setting up an MSME to providing market access to the world's largest ecommerce platforms, says Navneet Sehgal, Addl. Chief Secretary and Chairman, Handicraft Development and Marketing Corporation/Export Commissioner, Bureau of Export Promotion, Uttar Pradesh

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Uttar Pradesh under the leadership of CM Yogi Adityanath has taken a number of initiatives in the IT sector and the achievement of a five year target of attracting investment of twenty thousand crore in three years, is a sign that the state is in the right direction. Recently, the state has also bagged two major tech companies announcing investments in the space of data centers. Yotta has begun constructing a 20 acre data center park in Noida, and Japanese tech major NTT Data has acquired a land parcel of six acre to build a data center in Greater Noida. However, the state is also home to a major MSME sector, which has potential to bring phillip to the Atma Nirbhar Bharat abhiyan, job creation, etc. Express Computer exclusively spoke to Navneet Sehgal, Addl. Chief Secretary and Chairman, Handicraft Development and Marketing Corporation/Export Commissioner, Bureau of Export Promotion, Uttar Pradesh.

The Govt of UP’s unique ‘One District One Product’ completed 3 years on 24th January, 2021. Using technology, how have you empowered the MSMEs and what has been the progress so far. How much of the overall sales have been achieved on e-commerce platforms ?
The Government of Uttar Pradesh, under the One District One Product Scheme, aims to set up common facility centres (CFCs) in all of the 75 districts in Uttar Pradesh. These centres are aimed at creating various facilities for common use such as testing labs, training facility, design lab, packaging centre, exhibition and sales mart, raw material bank, common production/processing centre, and other such facilities. Till now, 27 CFCs have been provided in-principal approval by the Government of Uttar Pradesh and 15 of these projects are at implementation stage. 

These centres will help the artisans maintain a standard quality of their products in order to compete in the global market. Apart from this initiative, we have also been holding various skill development training and distributing toolkits to the artisans to make their task easy. An MoU between the MSME department and Abdul Kalam Technical University (AKTU) has also been signed for transfer of knowledge in technology.

As far as e-commerce is concerned, has created a separate micro-site for the ODOP products on its e-commerce portal. The ODOP cell is providing assistance of Rs 10,000 to the ODOP artisans/units for onboarding on e-commerce platform under the market development assistance scheme. The ODOP products available on are 11,000 while so far products worth Rs 24 crore have been sold on this portal.

The UP government has launched ‘Pravasi Rahat Mitra’ App to connect UP labourers/ workforce with prospective employers. Please share details.
Uttar Pradesh was one of the first States to undertake skill mapping and announce policies to try and assure employment to returning workers within the state. It had launched a skill mapping exercise of all returning workers to get an assessment of what employment can be provided in situ. 

The app was created to help the returnee migrants of the states from around the country. The app has full details of the persons staying in the shelter center and the migrants who have reached their homes directly from other states.

The basic information of the person such as name, educational qualification, temporary and permanent address, bank account details, Corona-related screening status and experience will be taken in the app. In this, details of more than 65 types of skills can be collected.

The status of distribution of ration kits to migrant citizens was also recorded in the app. To ensure that there is no data duplication, the unique mobile number was made the basis. Another feature of the app is that it can work online as well as offline.

Apart from this, data of people from rural and urban areas can also be separated in the app for effective decision making. Data collection will be done at a decentralized level, such as shelter site, transit point, residence of the person.

The data collected through the app will be installed on the state-based Integrated Information Management System.

To solve all GST-related problems, the MSME Saathi app and the website are offering quick solutions to businesses. Please share how has the app benefited the MSMEs
The state government is committed to providing all necessary assistance for development of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) and traditional craftsmen as they form the base for realising the dream of a self-reliant India. A new portal ‘Sathi’ was launched to help entrepreneurs set up new units. The government also plans to set up 1000 new units across the state in its efforts to generate more employment and also help people learn entrepreneurial skills. As many as 90 lakh MSMEs are functional in the state and the sector has been projected as the new growth engine for economic development of the state.

When Prime Minister Narendra Modi released the first economic package during the lockdown on May 14, the next day UP government provided loans worth Rs 2,002 crore to 56,754 new MSME units under the Online Self Employment Programme. More than 4 lakh MSME units were given loans of Rs 10,999 crore after the PM launched the ‘Atmanirbhar Uttar Pradesh Rojgaar Abhiyaan’ on June 26. In addition, over 2.50 lakh MSME units were given loans of Rs 7,841 crore in the third phase. Since then 4.37 lacs of existing units and 7.14 lac units have been financed by banks to the tune of Rs. 1110 crores and Rs. 2700 crore respectively.

The government is promoting the ‘MSME Saksham’ app to enable MSMEs to be loan ready, the ‘CHAMPIONS’ app for the creation and harmonious application of modern processes for increasing the output and ‘MSME Samadhan’ app which is a delayed payment monitoring system. Please share details on how these apps have benefited the MSMEs
The UP Government under the leadership of CM Yogi Adityanath is focused on leveraging tech solutions and all these apps are meant for the convenience of the entrepreneurs.

The MSME Saksham app enables the MSMEs to be loan-ready and it was launched by SIDBI and TransUnion-Credit Information Bureau (TU-CIBIL). The app is very handy as it has the informative articles and videos and showcases all the government schemes launched to help MSMEs along with help centre and FAQs. The business insights and the MSME resources showcase credit trends, loan applications, types of loans accessed by industry counterparts. The events calendar includes all the upcoming MSME-related events, CIBIL Score to assess an individual’s loan-eligibility and credit-consciousness, CIBIL Rank to help MSME owners understand their company’s credit profile.

The Champions app helps the MSMEs in terms of finance, raw materials, labour, permissions, etc. It helps the MSMEs capture new opportunities including manufacturing of medical items and accessories and also identify the bright MSMEs which can become national and international champions.

The MSME Samadhan is an initiative by the Ministry of Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises for settlement of delayed payments of MSE enterprises.

The procedure is to file an online application by the supplier MSE unit against the buyer of goods/services before the concerned State/UT MSEFC (Micro and Small Enterprise Facilitation Council. These are viewed by the MSEFC Council for their actions. MSEFC of the state after examining the case filed by MSE unit issues directions to the buyer unit for payment of due amount along with interest as per the provisions under the MSMED Act 2006.

The government had recently notified a new MSME (Establishment and Operations) Act that cut down the need for 80 kinds of NOCs (No Objection Certificates) from 29 different departments. This has been replaced by a single-window clearance system. Please share details.
According to the new MSME (Establishment and Operations) Act of 2020, MSMEs will get NOCs from a single window, and electricity connection of up to 20 KW within three days of filing the application.  Previously any MSME would need 80 types of NOCs from 29 departments.

Now, small industry owners will need to approach just the district-level nodal agency (DLNA), which will be established under the Act and have several state officials including the district magistrate (DM).

The law seeks to ease the process of opening up small industries in the state. If someone wants to establish an industry in UP under MSME category, then they will have to submit the application along with all other required documents related to setting up their industry to the District Level Empowered Committee. After this the committee will immediately start checking and verify these documents and licenses needed to start the industry will be issued within three days. The prescribed forms needed for other departments like revenue, labour, pollution control, energy and fire safety, among others, will also have to be submitted to this panel only.

The application can be filed under the ‘Nivesh Mitra Portal’, the government portal for the sector. Moreover, once a business obtains all the permissions, government officers won’t be allowed any inspection for 1,000 days.

Each DLNA will also include deputy DM, a UP Pollution Control Board regional officer, a UP Vidyut Nigam executive engineer, a State Industrial Development Corporation deputy labour commissioner, an Electrical Safety Directorate assistant director, the district fire officer and a District Industries and Enterprise Promotion Centre deputy commissioner.

The UP Chief Secretary will head a review panel, which will meet DLNAs every three months to discuss the matters related to the status of applications received and approvals issued. Additional chief secretaries of revenue, environment, forest, energy, labour, home, industrial development department and MSME will be part of the review committee.

According to the law, new ventures will also be given a fresh electricity connection of up to 20 KWs at the time of receiving NOC. Those who seek a connection of over 20 KW capacity will have to apply through ‘Nivesh Mitra Portal’, after which a new connection will be issued within four days.

Virtual exhibitions organised (e-exhibition) and similar exhibitions planned in 2021-22
Post pandemic, virtual platforms have become quintessential.  In fact, it has given a new lease of life to trades and businesses across the country. With an objective to support the small entrepreneurs and artisans in Uttar Pradesh, a virtual expo was organised by FICCI (Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry) and EPCH (Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts) in October 2020. 

It proved to be a good platform for collaborating and exploring new business opportunities with the availability of online stalls from all the 75 districts of the state. It was the first of its kind ODOP promotional event which took place online in the country where the buyers were directly able to contact the sellers and artisans. 

Now with the vaccine in sight and decreasing corona cases in the state, we are concentrating more on participating in physical exhibitions at both national and international level. The artisans from UP are already participating in the Dilli Haat. The ‘Gorakhpur Mahotsav’ recently concluded and the ‘Hunar Haat’ which is a 15 day exhibition as part of UP Diwas ( 24th January) will begin from today.

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