Union DoNER minister Dr Jitendra Singh on Wednesday told the Parliament that the NDA government has taken and implemented several initiatives to promote entrepreneurship in the Northeastern region.

“Steps have been taken for improvement in enabling an environment and vibrant ecosystem to enable entrepreneurs to tap the potential of the region,” said Dr Singh in Lok Sabha.

He informed that important connectivity projects for capital rail, air and road connectivity will be completed in the next two-three years.

Development of Inland Waterways-National Waterways 2 and National Waterways 16 will provide connectivity to Haldia through Indo-Bangladesh Protocol Route and greatly benefit the ecosystem by reducing cost, he said.

“Bamboo, which has the potential to change the northeast economy, has got a boost with setting up of bio-refinery at Numaligarh in Assam and a Bamboo Industrial Park at Dima Hasao in Assam, with reduced imports following enhancement of import duty to 25% on bamboo sticks for Agarbattis and amendment in Indian Forest Act, 1927,” Dr Singh said.

He said the institutional framework for the promotion of entrepreneurship is provided by several institutes in the Northeast.

These include the Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE), Guwahati; 3 Indian Institutes of Information Technology (IIIT) in the region, Institutes of Hotel Management at Guwahati and Shillong, Film and Television Institute at Jollang-Rakap (Jote) in Arunachal Pradesh and National Institute of Design (NID) in Jorhat.

Entrepreneurs in the Northeast have been benefitted under various credit-related schemes.

Under the Standup India Scheme, 3,449 loan accounts of SC/ST/women beneficiaries were sanctioned for Rs 714.83 crore and under Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana, a total of 1,07,26,209 loan accounts were sanctioned for Rs 48,868 crore in the 8 Northeastern states.

Under Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme, 24,455 units were set up and employment for 1,95,640 persons was generated from 2017-18 to December 12, 2020.

Under Credit Guarantee Trust Fund of Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE), an amount of Rs 4684.55 crore was approved towards 98,569 guarantees.

An amount of Rs 21.26 crore was settled for 83,393 beneficiaries under Interest Subvention Scheme for Incremental Credit to MSME since its inception in November 2018.

The Start-up India Initiatives aims at fostering entrepreneurship and promoting innovation by creating and enabling an eco-system. Under this, 408 startups have been recognized in the Northeast.

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