Soon after the Finance Minister announced major schemes and relief measures for the MSME sector, Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma hailed the government for the 'bold step'. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Wednesday announced a Rs 3 lakh crore collateral-free automatic loan schemes for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises along with five other major boosters aimed to revive the sector most hit with economic woes.
Speaking exclusively to Republic TV, Sangma said that giving maximum support to MSME's is the right step forward as that sector provides maximum employment.
"I would like to take this opportunity to thanks the government of India for taking this bold step. We expected this and it was the need of the hour. If you look at the relative situation globally, I this is a great step. Giving maximum support to MSME's is the right step forward. That sector gives maximum employment," said Sangma.
Nirmala Sitharamn on Wednesday stated that the definition of Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) will now be revised since their low threshold was holding them back from growing. While revealing that there was a long-pending demand for revision in the definition of MSMEs, Sitharaman announced that the investment limit for the MSMEs will be revised upwards, and additional criteria of turnover will also be introduced.
Opining on the same, the Meghalaya CM stated that the cornered sector would be motivated through the stimulus and added that the package will have an effect on the global image of India.
"This was in line with the PM's vision that this crisis needs to be turned into an opportunity. The central and the state govt have to their part. By putting the stimulus, the concerned sector will be motivated. We will see a global change in the way the economy and the manufacturing sector will be affected throughout the world," he added.
Currently, there are 74,281 confirmed novel coronavirus cases in India out of which 24,386 patients have recovered while 2,415 casualties have been reported. Earlier in the day, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman unveiled the first set of 15 measures of the financial package worth Rs.20 lakh crore. She stated that PM Narendra Modi laid down the vision of Atmanirbhar India (self-reliant India) after deep consultation with several sections of the society. Sitharaman also mentioned that the focus of the package is on the factors of production- land, labour, liquidity, and others.
The measures to revitalise the MSME sector include Rs.3 lakh crore collateral-free automatic loans for businesses, including MSMEs, Rs. 20,000 crore subordinate debt for MSMEs, Rs. 50,000 crore equity infusion through MSME Fund of Funds, revising the definition of MSMEs and the prohibition of global tenders in government procurement tenders up to Rs.200 crore. Other measures such as Rs.2500 crore EPF support for business and workers for 3 more months, reduction of EPF contribution for business and workers for 3 months, Rs.30,000 crore liquidity facility for NBFCs/HFCs/MFIs, Rs.45,000 crore Partial Credit Guarantee Scheme 2.0 for NBFCs and Rs.90,000 crore liquidity injection for DISCOMs were also announced. Furthermore, the registration and completion date of all registered projects expiring on or after March 25, 2020, shall be extended suo-moto by 6 months. The due date of income tax return, tax audit, assessments and the Vivad se Vishwas scheme has also been extended. Additionally, all Central agencies shall provide an extension to construction work, service contracts etc. by 6 months.