On the International Women’s Day, Kerala government unveiled major schemes to support women entrepreneurs in the State including raising of the loan limit for women under the ‘We-Mission Kerala’ initiative of Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation (KSIDC) to ₹50 lakh from ₹25 lakh with a five per cent interest from April 1.

Announcing the decision at the women entrepreneurs’ meet organised by the Department of Industries and Commerce, Minister for Law, Industries and Coir P Rajeeve said the doubling of the loan amount will help women entrepreneurs under ‘We-Mission Kerala’ project to scale up their businesses.

Also, the moratorium period under the scheme, aimed at identifying, supporting and promoting women entrepreneurs, will be raised to one year from the current six months, the Minister said.

Grant & more facilities

Rajeeve also announced a composite grant of ₹ five lakh for women cooperative societies, that commence operation in April or the existing ones that are planning for modernisation and technology advancement.

The Minister also said from April 1, women entrepreneurs can avail the facilities at the incubation centre at Kozhikode by giving 50 per cent rent.

The meet, which brought together women entrepreneurs from all parts of the state on the International Women’s Day, came within the larger framework of various programmes planned as part of the ‘Year of Entrepreneurs’. It focused on the current entrepreneurial-friendly environment and policies offered by the State.

The Minister launched the digital version of ‘Vyavasaya Keralam’ magazine and portal for entrepreneurship development (ED) club registration at the event.

Women as job providers

Minister for Health and Women and Child Development Veena George, who inaugurated the meet, said when a woman becomes an entrepreneur, people around her are also being empowered. In order to build a woman-empowered society, women have to become job providers.

Noting that women entrepreneurs are the role models of the society, Veena George said Women Development department is conducting training programmes in all 14 districts to encourage and nurture entrepreneurship among women.

Minister for Animal Husbandry and Dairy Development J Chinchurani said a lot of women have come forward for setting up dairy farms and ventures in the animal husbandry sector. She added that the government is extending all support for women to become entrepreneurs.

More than 43,000 women have started new ventures in the State as part of the Year of Entrepreneurs initiative. Over 500 women entrepreneurs from different parts of the State participated in the entrepreneurs’ meet.