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New Delhi,  (PTI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi Friday announced 59-minute loan sanctions, relaxation in labor laws, easier compliance with environmental rules and changes in company laws for small and medium enterprises to give a boost to the nation’s second-biggest employing sector

Announcing a slew of measures for the sector, he said GST-registered micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) will be sanctioned a loan of Rs 1 crore in just 59 minutes through a new portal

Also, GST-registered MSMEs will get 2 percent subvention or rebate on incremental new loans of up to Rs 1 crore, he said, adding interest subvention on pre- and post-shipment credit for exports by MSMEs has been increased from 3 percent to 5 percent

To rid the sector of inspector raj, Modi announced that inspections of factories in the sector will be sanctioned only through a computerized random allotment and inspectors will have to upload reports on portal within 48 hours. “No inspector can now go anywhere. He will be asked why he went to a factory,” he said

Easing compliance with environmental rules, MSMEs will need single air and water clearance and just one consent to establish a factory

MSMEs will have to file just one annual return on eight labor laws and 10 central rules, he said, adding that an ordinance has been promulgated to simplify levy of penalties for minor offences under the Companies Act

Modi termed the 12 new measures “historic” that will make Deepawali brighter for the sector and its millions of entrepreneurs and employees

Public sector companies, which were mandated to source 20 percent of their annual procurement from MSMEs, will now source at least a quarter of their requirement (25 percent) from the sector, he said, adding 3 percent of sourcing by PSUs would have to be done from MSMEs run by women

Also, all central public sector enterprises will have to take membership of the Government e-Marketplace (GeM) to facilitate online procurement of common use goods and services by various government departments and organizations

Modi announced Rs 6,000 crore for creation of 20 hubs and 100 tool rooms for technology upgradation

Clusters for MSMEs in the pharma sector will be created to boost production in the sector, he said

All companies with a turnover of more than Rs 500 crore would have to now come on Trade Receivables e-Discounting System (TReDS) platform so that there is no cash flow problem for MSMEs

Talking of India jumping 23 places on the World Bank’s latest ‘Ease of Doing Business’ ranking, Modi said in four years his government has achieved what many did not believe and what no other nation has done — leaping from 142nd rank in 2014 to 77th position

Breaking into top 50 rank is not far away, he added

Reform of processes will help MSMEs, Modi said.

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