CHANDIGARH: Punjab is looking to set up at least 20 industrial clusters across the state with thrust on Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector. For this, the state plans to approach the Centre and seek Rs 15 crore for each cluster.
Last year, the state could get approval for only one industrial cluster in Mohali, while the adjoining state of Haryana got a nod for seven. Tamil Nadu tops the list with as many as 30 operational clusters.
Punjab director, industries and commerce, D P S Kharbanda told TOI that some of the clusters had already started coming up in Ludhiana and Jalandhar over the past three-four months. “With draft of the new industrial policy in place, there is a concerted effort to focus on the MSME sector,” he said.
According to the scheme, industrialists can get together on a common platform with approval from the Centre, which issues them grants to develop infrastructure and buy machinery for common use, especially when small-scale industries are not in a situation to purchase expensive equipment.
Common facilities are set up for testing, training, effluent treatment, complementing production processes besides raw material storage. Sources said that according to the proposal being prepared by the state, there will be eight clusters in Ludhiana, nine in Jalandhar, two in Mohali and one in Patiala. For these, the state has prepared diagnostic study reports, while detailed project reports will be sent to the Centre for approval and seeking funds.
It is being planned that while clusters in Mohali will focus on engineering, Patiala will be an ideal place for auto parts. Knitwear and engineering tools will be thrust areas for Ludhiana and clusters in Jalandhar can give a boost to sports goods.
“It is quite ironic that even though the central scheme has been there for the past 10 years, the state has managed to identify a cluster only in Mohali. We hope that the new industrial policy does not remain on paper and the state takes concrete steps to revive the existing industry,” said Rajiv Bhatia, an industrialist from Patiala.
For Ludhiana, the industries department has received proposals for other types of industries which include tractor parts, sewing machine, oil expeller manufacturing, wire drawing cluster, sheet metal parts and printing and packaging cluster.
Meanwhile, there are plans to set up technology centres and common facility centres, besides MSME Facilitation Councils under MSME Act 2006 at Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Amritsar, SAS Nagar and Patiala to provide remedial measures to micro and small units for delayed payments by medium and large industries.
22 Aug 2019
23 Aug 2019