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Saturday, Feb 28, 2004

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Centre to fund Bengal surgical units' common marketing facility

Our Bureau

Kolkata , Feb. 27

THE Centre will provide 75 per cent of the funds required for setting up a Rs 3.2-crore common marketing facility for a cluster of tiny surgical equipment units, located at Baruipur in West Bengal.

This was stated here today by the Union Minister of State for Small-Scale Industries, Mr Tapan Sikdar, at the inauguration of the "Indsum Fair & technology summit-cum-symposium," organised by Federation of Associations of Small Industries of India.

The remaining 25 per cent of the project cost will be borne by the West Bengal Government.

In order to open up marketing and export avenues for rural artisans, handicraft items and SSI products, the West Bengal Government is setting up common market facilities at the district level.

Each of these entrepreneurs has unique selling points and quality products. But the tiny enterprises neither have appropriate marketing means nor the financial muscle to compete with big players in the market place.

The Government is attempting to bring them together to make their selling proposition more viable.

In Baruipur, there are 410 households engaged in the manufacture of precision surgical tools, but only a few have been able to make a breakthrough in exports.

The common marketing facility would include a staff pool, creation of a brand, collection and updating of market intelligence, creation of appropriate marketing strategies for local and global markets, adopting designing, packaging techniques as also execution of the marketing strategy.

The Indsum Fair, which will conclude on March 4, is designed to exploit the skills, potential, resources, innovations, products and services of the small and tiny enterprises.

National Small-Scale Industries Corporation Ltd, Small Industries Service Institute, Small Industries Development Bank of India, Khadi & Village Industries Commission, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd and United Bank of India are among around 200 participants at the fair.

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