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FM asks ministries to ensure clearance of MSME dues

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has asked ministries and their Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs) to ensure clearance of MSME’s dues at the earliest.

The Minister on Tuesday, asked the Ministries and their CPSEs to clear Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSME) dues by 31st July 2021, during a virtual meeting with senior government officials to discuss the infrastructure roadmap ahead.

According to an official statement this was the 6th review meeting by the finance minister with Ministries/Departments on the infrastructure roadmap ahead.

While reviewing the capital expenditure performance of the Ministries and their CPSEs, Finance Minister emphasised that enhanced CAPEX will play a critical role in revitalising the economy post-pandemic and encouraged the Ministries to front-load their capital expenditure.

Ministries were also requested to aim to achieve more than their CAPEX targets. Sitharaman also said that the Budget for Financial Year 2021-22 provided a capital outlay of Rs 5.54 lakh crore, a sharp increase of 34.5 per cent over the Budget Estimate of 2020-21.

''However, the efforts from the budgetary side to increase the capital expenditure have to be complemented by the Public Sector Enterprises,'' She added.

Sitharaman asked the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs to expedite the capital expenditure and make efforts for front-loading it. To the Petroleum ministry, she asked, to expedite monetization of assets during FY 2021-22.

Further, the FM also highlighted that the infrastructure expenditure is not just Central Government budgetary expenditure on infrastructure and includes infrastructure spending by State Governments and the private sector.

"It also includes Government expenditure through extra-budgetary resources. Therefore, Ministries are to actively work on getting projects funded through innovative structuring and financing and provide all support to the private sector for enhancing infrastructure spending," the Ministry of Finance said in a statement.

The finance minister also added that the Ministries also need to explore Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode for viable projects.

The meeting was attended by Finance Secretary, Secretary (Economic Affairs), Secretary (Public Enterprises), Secretary (Steel), Secretary (Housing & Urban Affairs), Secretary (Petroleum & Natural Gas), and Secretary (Space) as well as CMDs/CEOs of CPSEs of these Ministries/Departments.