Only 10% Women Entrepreneurs Operate MSMEs In J&K

Representational Photo

Srinagar- A recently published report from the Government of India's, Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises has surprisingly stated that the estimated MSME for the erstwhile state of J&K has been recorded at 7.09 (in lakhs) which is the 20th highest MSME in India.

The report titled, "Annual Report of the Ministry of MSME, 2021-22" was published on 15th February, 2022. As per the report, in J&K, the estimated number of Micro enterprises stood at 7.06 lakhs and for the small scale enterprises, the number was recorded at 0.03 lakhs. “The estimated number of medium enterprises in J&K was recorded at 0.00.”

Pertinently, in 2019-20, as per Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, a total of 7940 enterprises were registered in J&K of which 6078 were micro, 1767 were small and 95 were medium. In 2016-17, J&K saw a total 2539 enterprises being registered of which 2219, 305 and 15 were Micro, Small and Medium, respectively. In 2017-18,J&K saw a total of 990 registrations of which 678 were Micro, 302 were Small and 10 were medium.

“In 2018-19, 2416 enterprises were registered in J&K of which 1725,652 and 39 were MSM, respectively.” Another report from the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium enterprises said.

In a startling revelation, the report has also brought into fore a huge disparity that the employment provided in these three enterprises—based on NSS data from 2015-16—was relatively higher for males compared to females.

“In Jammu & Kashmir 1.50 (number in lakhs) women were provided employment in these enterprises and 9.37(number in lakhs) men were provided employment in this sector. Overall 10.88 (number in lakhs) were provided employment in J&K under these three sectors," the report noted.

Based on the NSS’ 73rd Round, the report has revealed a massive disparity among the proprietorship of MSMEs based on gender. Among the total MSMEs in Jammu & Kashmir, female proprietorship was recorded at only 74,785 while men owned 6,24,056.

Among all MSMEs with male owners was recorded at 1.29 percent while the share of state among all MSMEs with female owners was recorded at 0.60 percent,” the report said.

According to the Ministry of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises, 5476 enterprises have come up in J&K in the 2019- 2020 financial year. “In this, a total of 667 MSMEs were started by women in J&K while men had started 4809 businesses.”

On September 14, 2021, Jammu and Kashmir administration had announced the establishment of a women industrial estate in Udhampur district to further strengthen the women entrepreneurs’ ecosystem in J&K.

“These three new initiatives of Digi-Pay, Krishi, and Pashu Sakhi, besides several other programs of women empowerment such as Hausla, Tejaswini, UMEED, Rise Together will further accelerate efforts of J&K government in Empowering Women and making them key partner in UT’s development journey,” J&K’s LG Manoj Sinha had said.

Notably, the Ministry of Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises envisions a progressive MSME sector by “promoting growth and development of the Sector, including Khadi, Village and Coir Industries, in cooperation with concerned Ministries/Departments, State Governments and other Stakeholders, through providing support to existing enterprises, adopting cutting edge technologies and encouraging creation of new enterprises.”

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Zaid Bin Shabir

Zaid Bin Shabir is a special correspondent at Kashmir Observer. He tweets @Zaidbinshabir

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