National MSME Authority Headed by PM

The Draft National MSME Policy has called for setting up an overarching policy-making authority headed by the Prime Minister as also empowering the Centre to change investment limits instead of being “forced” to go to Parliament.

To accord the importance the MSME sector deserves, it is imperative to create an apex authority under the chairmanship of the Prime Minister. The authority may be called the National MSME Authority. The MSME Act of 2006 may accordingly be amended.

With regard to communication and consultation with States, the report has suggested an institutional forum as also an advisory service.

The draft also sets aside two proposals for redefining MSMEs on the basis of turnover or employment, saying that these “do not add anything worthwhile over the present system”, and suggested that a group be set up to look into the structure of different industries and suggest investment bands for each sub-sector.

A single law for micro and small enterprises employing less than 40 persons, social security cover for micro entrepreneurs, reassessment of the impact of bankruptcy code on MSMEs, replication of the Telangana model for statutory clearances of start-ups, creation of land banks by State governments and a dedicated TV channel are some of the measure proposed in the draft.

The draft policy also proposes raising the limit of MUDRA loans for micro units from ₹50,000 to ₹1 lakh, for small units from ₹50,000-5 lakh to ₹1-10 lakh and for medium enterprises from ₹5-10 lakh to ₹10-25 lakh.

MUDRA should also be scaled up as a financial institution responsible for the entire micro enterprises sector in the country.