iora meeting
The Union Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Mr Kalraj Mishra in a group photograph at the inauguration of the workshop to negotiate an MoU for MSME Cooperation amongst Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) member states, in New Delhi on January 19, 2017.(PIB Photo)

IORA Special Fund for Indian Ocean Rim Countries Set up

Indian ministry for MSME finalised MoU on MSME Cooperation with Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) member countries that will be effective once signed by 5 countries. The MoU finalized would be signed soon at an appropriate forum, said a statement.

The focus areas of the Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) include finalising linkages and alliances amongst MSMEs organizations, associations and various institutions engaged in MSME development in their countries, exchange best practices, policies and programs for MSME development, exchange greater involvement of MSMEs in the global supply chain, increase their market access, promote youth and women’s economic empowerment and encourage synergies with the IORA forum.

IORA Secretariat at Mauritius will be the coordinating agency for the implementation of the MoU and the IORA special fund created for the member countries will be used for it.

A Workshop on MSME Cooperation amongst IORA member countries was organized by India in the Economic Business Conference – II (EBC- II) held in Dubai in April, 2016, where 29 representatives from 14 member countries — Mozambique, Madagascar, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Comoros, Kenya, Seychelles, Malaysia, Mauritius, Singapore, Australia, UAE and Yemen participated.

The MoU for MSME Cooperation amongst Indian Ocean Rim Association member countries will provide an appropriate platform to IORA MSMEs to explore trade and investment opportunities, enhance market access, promote access to finance, promote innovation as a key competitive advantage for MSME, build capacity in management and entrepreneurship.

MSMEs constitute more than 90% of all business enterprises in the world and provide nearly 70% of global employment. The overwhelming majority of MSMEs in the developing world are micro-enterprises with fewer than 10 employees. India has more than 48 million MSMEs, which contribute more than 45% of India’s industrial output, 40% of the country’s total exports and create 1.3 million jobs every year.

India has already signed Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) with 18 countries for cooperation in MSME sector. The National Small Industries Corporation of India, Public Sector Enterprise under the Ministry of MSME has 34 MoUs with its counterpart organizations of foreign countries for cooperation in MSME sector.

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