Union Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) & Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari has said that the Central Government was committed to making the country a global manufacturing hub of construction equipment. Gadkari outlined this while addressing a webinar by the industry chamber, Confederation of Indian Industry's (CII's) virtual exhibition on ‘Construction Equipment, Technology, Components and Aggregates’ through video conference on Tuesday.
He also exhorted the participants to face the challenges thrown up by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The entire industrial sector today is facing a lot of challenges in the wake of COVID-19 crisis but we have to fight all the challenges with a positive frame of mind and make the automobile industry a manufacturing hub for construction equipment,” Gadkari said.
He said to achieve the objective of self-reliance the country needed to reduce import dependence and boost the manufacturing of various components and parts in the automobiles sector. He appealed to all industries in the sector to work towards developing industrial clusters, technology centres, research labs and upgrade technology and skills.
Gadkari assured the stakeholders to extend all possible support in developing technology centres. The minister also stressed on the need for research and cost reduction without compromising on quality.
To achieve this, cost reduction without compromising with quality was required, he added.
Need for JVs and Foreign Participation
The minister also emphasised on the need for joint ventures and foreign collaborations to obtain access to easy finance and compatible technologies. Maximum use of liquified natural gas (LNG), compressed natural gas (CNG) and biofuels would help bring down costs, he said.
The government was also working on integrating and developing all kinds of transport like waterways, sea transportation, rail, road and air transport, which will reduce the logistics cost and help industries in a big way, he said.
He said that the government was proactively tweaking policies for achieving Aatmnirbharta or self-reliance as envisioned by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Gadkari further said that to encourage the development of a robust MSME ecosystem, their definition had been changed and the necessary credit facility and fund of funds were created. He said that work was on for a new scrapping policy for the transport sector. He said the government was ready to support the industry in all possible ways and it should come forward with innovative plans to fulfil the dream of turning the country into a manufacturing hub in the automobiles sector.
Gadkari also emphasised on clearing MSME dues by all on priority. He called upon large companies to treat this as an important matter. He asked CII members to help in the development and growth of ancillary units or industries to supply spare parts.