GROWTH AND PERFORMANCE OF MICRO, SMALL AND MEDIUM ENTERPRISES (MSMEs)
The micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) sector contributes significantly to the manufacturing output, employment and exports of the country. It is estimated that in terms of value, the sector accounts for about 45 per cent of the manufacturing output and 40 per cent of the total exports of the country. The sector is estimated to employ about 595 lakh persons in over 261 lakh enterprises throughout the country. Further, this sector has consistently registered a higher growth rate than the rest of the industrial sector. There are over 6000 products ranging from traditional to high-tech items, which are being manufactured by the MSMEs in India. It is well known that the MSMEs provide good opportunities for both self-employment and wage employment. The size of the registered MSMEs sector is estimated to be 15.64 lakh. Of the total working enterprises, the proportion of micro, small and medium enterprises were 94.94%, 4.89% and 0.17% respectively. This comprises 67.10% manufacturing enterprises and 32.90% services enterprises. About 45.23% of the enterprises were located in rural areas. Small industries sector (MSEs) is undoubtedly the engine of employment and income generation. The interest in the development of SSI was aroused only when it was realized that the development of large scale industries in India was considered a difficult task. The constraints of capital, skilled manpower and raw materials aided and abetted such difficulty. In a developing and predominantly agricultural economy like India, small industries can exercise a stabilizing influence on the vagaries and uncertainties of a rural economy, besides contributing to its prosperity.