Nagaland Government, SIDBI Sign MoUs For Entrepreneurship, Development Projects - Eastern Mirror
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Nagaland Government, SIDBI sign MoUs for entrepreneurship, development projects

By EM Bureau Updated: Feb 13, 2024 11:32 pm
SIDBI officials, MLAs and government officials during the inauguration of SIDBI projects in Nagaland at Capital Convention Centre, Kohima (EM images)

DIMAPUR/ KOHIMA — Sports scholarships worth INR 25 lakh for five sportspersons from Nagaland was among several projects launched for the state by Small Industries Development of India (SIDBI) on Tuesday.

While the sports scholarship aims at empowering the youth, SIDBI also launched an iniatiative called the State Swavalamban Connect Kendras (SCKs), aiming to provide essential support and resources to budding entrepreneurs across various sectors.

The SCKs will be opened in all district headquarters of the state, starting with the inauguration of two centres in Kohima on Tuesday.

Additionally, SIDBI also announced a startup seed fund as well as SCDF (SIDBI Clustered Development Fund) with a fund allocation of INR 100 crore earmarked for supporting various projects intended for the advancement of Micro and Small Enterprises (MSMEs) in the states.

Notably, Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) for the four initiatives were signed between the government of Nagaland and SIDBI, earlier on Tuesday, at an event organised by the Investment and Development Authority of Nagaland (IDAN) in collaboration with SIDBI.

During the signing which was done at the Chief Minister’s residence in Sovima, the government of Nagaland was represented by the Chief Minister of Nagaland Neiphiu Rio along with IDAN Chairman Abu Metha, and Joint Secretary of IDAN, Reny Wilfred while SIDBI was represented by Chairman and Managing Director S. Ramann.

Addressing the launching programme at the Capital Convention Centre, Kohima, Ramann said the problem lies not with the funding of projects but with the monitoring and making sure they are implemented properly. Implementation of SIDBI projects is one big failure across the country, he said.

Ramann said that SIDBI has committed more than INR 5400 crore to over 120 funds under its various Fund of Funds operations, including alternative investment funds (AIF), fund of funds for startups (FFS), and the ASPIRE Fund. He was surprised that Nagaland does not have a single alternative investment fund and added that there is still much work to be done.

He assured to activate his team in Nagaland and expedite awareness programmes on SIDBI projects across the state.

The SIDBI chairman also pointed out that the coverage of Credit Guarantee Fund Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) in Nagaland is 85% (instead of 75%) for a loan amount, which means banks are getting more interest.

At the event, advisor of Industries and Commerce, Hekani Jakhalu gave an overview of the entrepreneur and startups scenario in Nagaland, starting from late 2011.

Given the peculiar political and geographical situation of the state, it is taking time to open up and most of current entrepreneurs are first generation entrepreneurs.

Jakhalu observed that the biggest roadblock for entrepreneurs and businesses in the state is access to credit, besides stable power supply and connectivity, which are essential for businesses to flourish.

She informed that over 20,000 MSMEs in the state have UDYAM registration and there are around 14,500 self-help groups who have been trained. Now, the state government is trying to make sure that the doors are opened for them and ensure that they can scale up.

The entrepreneurs are picking up and are ready to scale up, and it is now up to the government and other stakeholders to create the right environment for it.

Dr. Subhransu S Acharya, chief general manager of SIDBI, highlighted the objectives of SIDBI and said that the MSME sector is the answer to creating value and employment opportunities. He assured of SIDBI’s commitment to help in creating an ecosystem where something useful can be achieved. Things are going to happen in a much bigger fashion, he maintained.

The Principal Secretary and Development Commissioner of Planning and Transformation, R Ramakrishnan, said that the state government is proposing a lot of infrastructure investments to SIDBI while expressing hope they will look into it.

Many are willing to invest in the state but things are not happening due to two major challenges—landowners and power supply, he said, underlining the landholding system in Nagaland, where land belongs to the people and not the government. He assured that the state is trying to acquire land for potential investors to carry out projects.

Several officials including Commissioner Mhabemo Yanthan, Joint secretary of IDAN, Reny Wilfred also addressed the event where advisor of Home Guards, Civil Defence, Fire and Emergency, S Kiusumew Yimchunger was also in attendance.

During the event, representatives from diverse sectors, including agriculture, tourism, and social entrepreneurship, engaged in fruitful discussions and networking sessions with SIDBI officials, laying the groundwork for future collaborations and partnerships.

Earlier at the MoU signing in Dimapur, Ramann had said that a dedicated team comprising individuals from Nagaland would be stationed in Dimapur to monitor the SIDBI projects. The team will also be deployed in various regions to provide assistance to these projects. The monitoring process will extend to overseeing the implementing agencies, with SIDBI deploying its own experts to ensure effective and vigilant supervision of the projects, he said.

By EM Bureau Updated: Feb 13, 2024 11:32:27 pm
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