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Two-day India-Commonwealth SME Trade Summit concludes

 New Delhi, May 31 (KNN) The two-day India-Commonwealth SME Trade Summit concluded in the national capital with the MSMEs from across the Commonwealth countries reaching an agreement on what needs to be done to improve intra-trade amongst the SMEs in the region.

Addressing the concluding session, KK Jalan, Secretary, Ministry of MSME, said, “The measurement for success of India-Commonwealth SME Association can be done by evaluating how much business it increases within India-Commonwealth countries and amongst themselves and by evaluating how many SMEs from these countries have partnered with each other.”

After having brainstorming session on Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Co-operation Framework to Support Intra-Commonwealth Trade and Investment, participating MSMEs from across the Commonwealth Countries agreed to firm support to the goal of deepening intra-Commonwealth Trade and investment.

The MSMEs also agreed to cooperate, in partnership with all stakeholders including government in areas including information dissemination, exchanging information on MSME regulatory framework, examining definitions of MSMEs with a view to understanding the nature of MSME entities in the Commonwealth, Creating of MSME database and more.

Highlighting the key messages that have emerged from the two-day long Summit, Professor Abhijit Das, Head, Centre for WTO Studies, said, “This summit saw participation of high level policy makers from more than 25 Commonwealth Countries together aiming at increasing intra-Commonwealth trade.”

He said, “Many areas especially in services sectors were identified where Commonwealth SMEs can improve collaboration.”

Prof Das highlighted that one of the important issue discussed was facilitating commonwealth travel business card based on the experience of APEC countries.

Pointing the suggestions made to Commonwealth Secretariat by the participating delegates, Prof Das said, “Some of the suggestions made to the Commonwealth Secretariat was to analyse how high tax custom duties, logistic costs are impeding costs to SMEs in exporting to other countries; Create data base of non-tariff barriers faced by SMEs in CMW countries; Share best practices; Identify platform to bring buyers and sellers together etc.”

Anup Wadhawan, Additional Secretary, Department of Commerce, in his special remarks, said the two day discussion was productive highlighting possibility of cooperation amongst Commonwealth countries.

He said the Summit helped identifying opportunities for cooperating amongst Commonwealth Countries through awareness building, capacity building, exchanging experiences etc.

Deodat Maharaj, Secretary General, Commonwealth Secretariat, London, in his concluding remark said, “Through ICSA, we must generate business opportunities and link businesses with businesses.”

He highlighted that exchange took place between SMEs from different countries from Commonwealth and was optimistic that SMEs will have a great role to play in delivering new technology and products.

“We are keen at CMW Secretariat to do everything possible to enable platform for exchange of info within CMW family,” Maharaj added.

In his concluding remark, Anil Bhardwaj, Secretary General, FISME, thanked the Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of MSME, Commonwealth Secretariat, Dignitaries from other countries and participating delegates for extending support for the initiative. (KNN Bureau)