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Monday, December 11, 2023

MSMEs to get free cost accounting consultancy, says Industries Minister

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The government will extend support to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) by providing them free consultancy on cost and management accounting, Industries Minister P. Rajeeve said here on Tuesday.

The Directorate of Industries and Commerce will rope in the services of the Institute of Cost Accountants of India (ICWAI) from 2023-24 financial year, he said after inaugurating the State’s first Enterprise Development Centre (EDC) at Angamaly. To begin with, 300 MSMEs will benefit from the scheme, the Minister said while announcing the opening of EDC under the government-run Kerala Institute for Entrepreneurship Development (KIED).

Though the mortality rate of Kerala’s MSMEs is less than the national average of 30%, the government is keen to avoid premature closure of such units by extending all support, he added.

Mr. Rajeeve also announced the formal launch of KIED’s Business Growth Programme that aims to accelerate MSME growth in the State by supporting their expansion and financing innovations. Applications can be made at www.edckerala.org under the six-month programme for MSME units that have been operational for less than 10 years and are in the manufacturing sector or are providing specialised services to MSMEs. They should have an annual turnover of between ₹35 lakh and ₹50 crore.

The Minister, while stressing the need for translating the results of research projects into marketable products, said the country had recently been witnessing a change in thrust areas that support industries. “Much of the thrust during the last three decades was on Information Technology. The next 30 years, it is going to be biotechnology,” he said.

The EDC has been conceived to provide individualised assistance to entrepreneurs for planning, starting, sustaining, reviving and growing their ventures. With its focus on building unique and innovative next-generation MSMEs and small businesses, the centre will provide support for technology adoption, high-value opportunities, and application of knowledge systems in select sectors.

The government is going ahead with plans to strengthen the industry-academia link by setting up industrial parks close to universities and other higher education institutions. Such collaborations will boost commercial application of research and development projects in institutions of excellence. The State aims to get into the top 10 ranks in ease of doing business at the national level next year. At present, it stands at 15, which has been an improvement from 28 a year ago, Mr. Rajeeve said, according to a release.

The KIED is an autonomous State-level institute promoted by the Department of Industries and Commerce under the State government.

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