Union Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Industries (MSME) Minister Narayan Rane and Minister of State for MSME Bhanu Pratap Singh Verma launched a special entrepreneurship drive for women “SAMARTH” at New Delhi. The program was launched on the occasion of International Women’s Day and aims to boost women-led businesses in India.
The initiative was launched in the presence of the Secretary (MSME), AS&DC (MSME), Chairman (KVIC), Senior Officials of the Ministry and women entrepreneurs.
Features of SAMARTH initiative
- 20 Percent of seats in free Skill Development Programs organized under skill development schemes of the Ministry will be allocated for women.
- This will directly benefit more than 7,500 women from the initiative.
- 20 percent of MSME Business Delegations sent to domestic and international exhibitions under the schemes for Marketing Assistance implemented by the Ministry will be dedicated to women-owned businesses.
- This will ensure that women entrepreneurs can take advantage of marketing opportunities to showcase their products in domestic and international exhibitions.
- According to Rane, the drive will help women to become self-reliant and independent by availing them of self-employment opportunities.
- Women entrepreneurs can also avail of a 20 per cent discount on the annual processing fee on commercial schemes of the NSIC (National Small Industries Corporation) in 2022-2023.
MSME Minister Narayan Rane congratulated the women at the event and said that the MSME sector offers many opportunities for women and such programs and initiatives help promote self-employment opportunities for Indian women. Mr. Rane also said that the MSME Ministry is dedicated to working toward the betterment of women by developing schemes to benefit women and women-led businesses to promote entrepreneurship among women.
It is interesting to note that women own only about 20 percent of over 6 crore small businesses in India. This low percentage can be easily attributed to gender biases prevalent in society, lack of access to finance and network of people, low confidence and absence of support from family, lack of safety in public places, workspaces, and lack of childcare facilities while at work.
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