Sustainability for MSMEs: As the adoption of measures to boost sustainable business practices gain momentum among enterprises in the country, a growing number of MSMEs are also getting on board the sustainable drive recognising the value of sustainability beyond commercial criteria. However, only 13 per cent of MSMEs are aware of the benefits of implementing sustainability measures, said a statement on the Sustainability Perception Index (SPeX) launched by SIDBI and Dun and Bradstreet India on Thursday.
The report, according to the statement, for the third quarter of the current fiscal surveyed MSMEs to understand the actions taken to implement sustainability principles and advance sustainable development goals. The survey results show a high level of willingness among senior executives while in terms of awareness and implementation, there are distinct areas where MSMEs are excelling and others where they lag, the statement said. However, it didn’t state the methodology adopted for the survey and the number of respondents surveyed.
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“SPeX at 46 indicates that the perception of MSMEs towards sustainability is in the low to middle range. MSMEs believe that raising awareness is necessary to increase adoption of sustainability measures, and that these would benefit the bottom line (23 per cent), staff retention (21 per cent), and social lives and communities (20 per cent),” said Avinash Gupta, Managing Director and CEO – India, Dun & Bradstreet.
The greatest enabler of sustainability adoption is cost reduction, followed by internal management drive and government policies and regulations while the most difficult issues are technical expertise and established operational processes, Gupta said.
Other key findings from the survey were:
Amongst the three stages of sustainability (willingness, awareness, and implementation) the sub-index for willingness is highest at 61, suggesting that MSMEs are willing to adopt sustainability measures
Implementation and awareness is low, with sub-index values of 41 and 40, respectively.
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Nearly 44% consider sustainability measures to be a useful guideline towards responsible governance, while another 19% consider it to be a requirement for working with global businesses
Sivasubramanian Ramann, Chairman and Managing Director of SIDBI said understanding and awareness about ESG are gaining momentum amongst MSMEs and it is relevant in view of changing scenarios related to climate aspects.
In August 2022, India had enhanced its target to reduce the emissions intensity of its GDP by 45 per cent by 2030 from the 2005 level and achieve about 50 per cent cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel-based energy resources by 2030.
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