Ease of Doing Business for MSMEs: Retailers Association of India (RAI) has made several representations in the last three years to various ministries to restore their status as Micro and Small enterprises, including to the Honourable MSME Minister Shri Nitin Gadkari.
Retail Trade is not classified under Micro and Small enterprises since the year 2017. The Government’s Gazette notification dated June 27, 2017 said that organisations that neither deal in manufacturing or offering services fall outside the purview of The Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Act, 2008. Hence, they cannot get Udyog Aadhaar Memorandum (which is called MSME registration). This includes enterprises related to all types of wholesale and retail trading activities.
The rationale was that retailing doesn’t fall under the priority sector, said RAI’s statement. As a result, loans given to the MSME sector come under priority sector lending. The objective behind primary sector lending is to promote agricultural and labour-intensive businesses in the economy and hence loans are available at concessional rates. “Due to withdrawal of MSME status retailers are forced to either borrow at a higher rate or from informal financial sources,” the statement said.
Kumar Rajagopalan, CEO of Retailers Association of India (RAI), said, “Retailers in the country should be made competitive. For this they will need all support that they can garner from the government. Recognizing millions of small and medium retailers under MSME will give them a much needed impetus and finance options.”