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Only 5 out of 15 proposed MSME Technology Centres completed in 7 years: Govt data

Ease of Doing Business for MSMEs: The programme with a total cost of Rs 2,200 crore including Rs 20 crore assistance from the World Bank, was scheduled to end by 2020-21.

The TCSP programme had proposed upgrading the existing 18 TCs as well.

Ease of Doing Business for MSMEs: Only five technology centres (TC) out of 15 proposed under the Technology Centre Systems Programme (TCSP) of the 

government, which was launched in January 2015, have been completed so far, according to the government data. The programme with a total cost of Rs 2,200 crore including Rs 20 crore assistance from the World Bank was scheduled to end by 2020-21. However, work at new proposed centres in Durg (Chhattisgarh), Baddi (Himachal Pradesh), Kochi, Patna, and Sriperumbudur (Tamil Nadu) in the general engineering segment was still under implementation.

The information was shared by MSME Minister Narayan Rane in Rajya Sabha earlier this week in a written reply to a question. Other TCs in Imphal, Bengaluru,

Greater Noida, and Sitarganj (Uttarakhand) were also under implementation. At TC Kanpur, civil infrastructure work was completed and around 85 per cent of the training machines required were installed.

“These Technology Centres will provide assistance to MSME sectors in General Engineering, Automotive, Fragrance & Flavour and Electronics System Design & Manufacturing (ESDM) sectors through providing access to advanced manufacturing technologies, skilling of manpower in technology development, and providing technical and business advisory support to MSMEs,” Rane said.

Importantly, during the duration of the programme, the locations of the proposed TCs were seemingly changed, which likely led to the delay for the new centres to come up. For instance, in 2015 March, Saha and Rohtak in Haryana, Kalaburagi and Kolar in Karnataka, Itanagar in Arunachal Pradesh and Kathua in Jammu and Kashmir were among the nine locations identified wherein respective state governments had offered land for TCs, as per a statement by the MSME Ministry on March 9, 2015. Currently, apart from 10 centres, which are still under implementation stage, work at five TCs at Bhiwadi (Rajasthan), Pudi (Andhra Pradesh), Bhopal, Rohtak, and Puducherry was completed.

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The TCSP programme had proposed upgrading the existing 18 TCs as well. The centres offered precision tooling along with new technologies including CAD/CAM, CNC machining for tooling, vacuum heat treatment, rapid prototyping, etc. apart from providing skilled manpower. The 18 TCs had provided training to

2.73 lakh trainees, supported 43,563 units, and earned revenue of Rs 350.96 

crore, according to the MSME Ministry’s 2020-21 annual report. These centres were set up as autonomous bodies of the ministry and worked on a self- sustainable basis for meeting their operating expenses.

In September 2021, Rane had inaugurated the Rohtak TC and had estimated it to train over 8,400 trainees annually. Post completion of remaining TCs, their total training capacity was expected to be enhanced from 1.5 lakh in 2017-18 to

2.5 lakh per annum, the annual report of the MSME Ministry 2017-18 had said.