Ease of doing business for MSMEs: The government’s mega cluster support scheme SFURTI (Scheme for Fund for Regeneration of Traditional Industries), which brings traditional sectors and artisans into organised clusters, has 53 per cent of approved clusters functional. Between 2014-15 (when the scheme was revamped from the original scheme launched in FY06) and November 30, 2022, 498 clusters were approved for development across India, of which 266 were functional.
Sharing data in the Lok Sabha on December 22, minister of state for MSMEs, Bhanu Pratap Singh Verma added that 498 clusters approved (against the target of 400 clusters) with the government’s assistance of Rs 1,292 crore benefitted around 2.94 lakh artisans.
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The traditional sectors covered under SFURTI are textiles, handicrafts, bamboo, agro-processing, honey, khadi, coir, etc. Under the scheme, assistance up to Rs 2.5 crore is provided for ‘regular clusters’ with up to 500 artisans and up to Rs 5 crore for ‘major clusters’ which consist of over 500 artisans. The support offered to clusters also includes infrastructure creation such as the establishment of Common Facility Centre (CFC), procurement of new machinery and raw material, capacity building, design and marketing linkage, exposure visits, etc., said Verma.
Year-wise, 106 clusters became functional in FY22 in comparison to 96 in FY21, 19 in FY20, 12 in FY19, 16 in FY18, two in FY17 and none in FY16. In terms of jobs to artisans, 62,149 artisans benefitted in FY22 vis-a-vis 62,722 in FY21 down from 84,720 in FY20, the latest data on MSME ministry’s Dashboard showed. However, the scheme is presently under consideration for continuation, said Verma.
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In October this year, the government’s Khadi and Village Industries Commission had organised the first SFURTI Mela in Delhi, a national-level exhibition of traditional products. Handloom, handicrafts, khadi, coir, and agro-processing products were showcased by 100 artisans from 50 SFURTI clusters including Sozni Embroidery cluster of Jammu and Kashmir, Cane and Bamboo cluster of Meghalaya, Channapatna Toy cluster of Karnataka, Natural Dye Cluster of Rajasthan, Madhubani painting Cluster of Bihar, etc.
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