The World Bank has started a survey in Bengal on the growth of Micro Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) that will give special emphasis on the use of inland waterways for transporting raw materials and finished goods manufactured in the MSME units across the state.
The surveyors will also study the common methods of transportation and logistics taken up by owners of MSME units to carry their products from one place to the other.
It may be mentioned that Bengal is the second largest producer across the nation in terms of number of MSMEs — 3.7 million enterprises. The state has recorded highest credit flow to MSME for the past five years, amounting to $15 billion.
Adding to this, the state had become the second largest in the country in terms of number of people employed in MSMEs, which is 8.6 million. "MSME was promoted heavily in the Bengal Global Business Summit and we are leaving no stone unturned to promote the sector in the next level," said a source in state Secretariat Nabanna.
However, World Bank, in association with EY (Ernst & Young) recently held a series of meetings with the MSME unit owners to know the process of their business, especially the mode of transportation. E&Y, the multinational professional services firm, will assist the World Bank in conducting the survey. It may also be mentioned that Bengal has a steady 8 percent growth rate in MSMEs in 2014-15 and it has 19 percent MSME's share of the state's Gross Value Added (GVA) in 2014-15.
The state government has set up a $30 million or approximately Rs 200 crore-Venture Capital Fund (VCF) to ensure a fast MSME growth.
The government also set up MSME Felicitation Centre (MFCs) in every district to provide single window services to the entrepreneurs.
'Micro-Business Credit Card' scheme was already launched by the state government to help out MSME entrepreneurs. A portal — 'myEnterpriseweb' was set up to serve promptly to people who wish to open MSME units in the state.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had initiated the success story of MSME in Bengal. The government created around 331 new MSME clusters. The market value of the fixed asset in MSME in Bengal is $5.9 billion — which is considered to be her single-handed achievement.