Thursday, June 20, 2019

President announces pension for small-scale business owners - Elets

President announces pension for small-scale business owners - Elets


President announces pension for small-scale business owners - Elets

Posted: 20 Jun 2019 06:33 AM PDT

President Ram Nath Kovind while addressing the joint sitting of both the Houses of the Parliament today announced the pension for small shopkeepers and retail traders along with other developments in Banking and Financial sector.

Ram Nath Kovind

He also presented the road map for the Government of India in the coming years while also highlighting the tasks which have already been done.

The session was attended by Vice President Venkaiah Naidu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, newly-elected Lok Sabha speaker Om Birla and other Members of both houses of Parliament (MPs).

Key takeaways from the President's speech in Parliament included:

  • For the first time, a Government has taken note of the economic security of small shopkeepers. In the very first meeting of the Cabinet, a separate 'Pension Scheme' has been approved for small shopkeepers and retail traders. About 3 crore small shopkeepers in the country will benefit from this scheme.
  • Today India has joined the league of countries with the most number of start-ups in the world. To improve the start-up ecosystem, the Government is simplifying the rules. This campaign will be further expedited. Our goal is to establish 50,000 start-ups in the country by 2024.
  • Economic development plays the most vital role in improving the lives of our countrymen. Today India is among the fastest growing economies in the world. Inflation is low, the fiscal deficit is under control, foreign exchange reserves are growing and the impact of Make In India is clearly visible.
  • India is now on the way to become the world's 5thlargest economy in terms of GDP. To maintain the high growth rate, the reform process will continue. It is our objective to make India a 5-trillion dollar economy by 2024.
  • Work is underway in full earnest to transform India into a Global Manufacturing Hub. Keeping in view Industry 4.0, a New Industrial Policy will be announced shortly. In 'Ease of Doing Business', India has leap-frogged 65 positions during the past 5 years, from a ranking of 142 in 2014 to 77. Now our goal is to be among the top 50 countries in the world. In order to achieve this, the process of simplification of rules will be further expedited in collaboration with the States. In this sequence, necessary amendments are also being brought in the Companies Law.
  • The taxationregime plays an important role in accelerating economic development. Along with continuous reform, the simplification of the taxation system is also being emphasised. Exemption to persons earning up to Rs. 5 lakh from payment of income tax is an important step in this direction.
  • Similarly, the indirect tax system is also being made simple and effective. With the implementation of GST, the concept of 'One country, One tax, One market' has become a reality. Efforts to further simplify the GST will continue.
  • Keeping in view the interests of small traders, my Government has launched a New Pension Scheme for them. 'National Traders Welfare Board' will be constituted shortly, and 'National Retail Trade Policy' will be formulated to promote retail business. Accident insurance of up to Rs. 10 lakh will also be provided to all traders registered under GST.
  • The  MSME sector provides a strong foundation for the country's economy and plays a critical role in employment generation. Several steps have been taken to ensure smooth cash flow to enterprises run by small entrepreneurs. In order to ensure that entrepreneurs associated with the MSME sector do not face any problem in accessing credit, the credit guarantee coverage is being enhanced to Rs.1 lakh crore.
  • 'Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code' is among the biggest and most impactful economic reforms undertaken in the country. With the coming into force of this Code, banks and other financial institutions have been able to settle directly or indirectly an amount of more than Rs.3 lakh 50 thousand crore. This Code has also curbed the tendency of wilfully defaulting on loans taken from banks and other financial institutions.

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Banking imbalance: Only 9.2% of loans for businesses that give more than half of Philippine jobs - INQUIRER.net

Posted: 20 Jun 2019 01:14 AM PDT

The array of small and medium-scale businesses that contribute up to 62.5 percent of employment and comprise 99.5 percent of all businesses in the Philippines were getting only 9.2 percent of loans and financing from the country's major banks.

These figures prompted the Union Bank of the Philippines to ask its fellow financial institutions to recognize the key role medium and small scale enterprises (MSMEs) play in the Philippine economy and allocate more of their money to help these MSMEs thrive, at least.

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To help MSMEs thrive, Unionbank is offering a digital platform, called UnionBank GlobalLInker, to allow entrepreneurs to promote their brands, products and services and get access to financial assistance and other solutions.

Maurese Soriano, UnionBank program manager, said the platform would help "address restraints on capital and other sources of funding" besetting MSMEs.

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Pia Roman-Tayag, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas managing director, at a recent forum cited a World Bank report that showed some 81.2 percent of Philippine businesses rely on internal funds to finance expansion of keep themselves alive. Only 0.1 percent have access to bank financing, which was seen as a key ingredient of growth.

Tayag said smaller firms do not know where to turn to for financing while financing institutions have been limited in their assessments of small businesses because of their lack of credit history. (Editor: Tony Bergonia)

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This ‘micro’-sized license is giving Mass. residents a chance to launch small marijuana businesses - The Boston Globe

Posted: 20 Jun 2019 06:48 AM PDT

"It's a good size to bite off," said Kimberly Gibson, the majority owner of Gibby's Garden LLC in Uxbridge, which received its final license in May — the first microbusiness in the state to reach that stage. Gibson owns and operates the company with her husband, son, and brother.

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"It's a good fit for us, for a family business," she said.

The microbusiness license allows for small-scale cultivation and/or manufacturing (companies can apply for a license that includes just one or both). The Gibby's Garden license allows both.

Seedlings grow in the Veg Room at Gibby's Garden in Uxbridge.
Seedlings grow in the Veg Room at Gibby's Garden in Uxbridge.(Craig F. Walker/Globe Staff)

There's also a residency requirement: The majority of a microbusiness applicant's executives have to have lived in Massachusetts for at least a year.

The license type provides a number of benefits, including a streamlined application process that lets the company apply for cultivation and manufacturing without submitting two separate applications. Microbusiness applicants also get half off the annual licensing fees — amounting to about $312 for outdoor cultivating, $625 for indoor cultivating, and $2,500 for manufacturing — making it more accessible to the average person, Gibson said.

"The microbusiness is a nice fit for someone who just had a heart for the industry," she said.

Gibby's Garden will grow its own marijuana flower and create a line of products to sell wholesale to retailers. They want to be a "microbud" — a term they coined — "like the microbrew of beers," Gibson said.

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Gibson's son, Joe Gibson, is the head grower for the company and said the microbusiness license gives them the opportunity to focus on craft cultivation and branding for their products.

"We want to be in the niche market," he said.

Joe Gibson, standing, talks with his uncle, Dave Deuitch, in the office at Gibby's Garden in Uxbridge.
Joe Gibson, standing, talks with his uncle, Dave Deuitch, in the office at Gibby's Garden in Uxbridge.(Craig F. Walker/Globe Staff)

They're not the only ones.

Two other aspiring microbusinesses have provisional licenses from the state commission, and several more have submitted their applications.

Audrey Park and Lucas Wiggins, who together make up Hothouse Holyoke Inc., want to make cannabis-infused, gluten-free edibles in an effort to make marijuana use more accessible for those with gluten allergies.

Their business, which is in the Sira Accelerator training and mentorship program, received its provisional license in January.

"We don't have the capital to start a giant cultivation," Wiggins said. "We knew from early on that we were going to have to be very limited. We were happy to see they carved out a little spot for the small people."

Both former teachers, Park and Wiggins moved to Massachusetts from Texas in 2016. When they began sharing their gluten-free, chocolate-chip cookies with colleagues, they half-joked they should start a business.

They began reading up on microbusinesses, and Park realized it was a "chance for a smaller company to make it in this industry."

"It's just more of a feasible way for a smaller company to start out," she said.

And that's really what the Cannabis Control Commission had built the license for, said Commissioner Jennifer Flanagan.

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Even in early discussions, Flanagan said, there had to be a license type that would bring local residents into the industry and give them a chance to launch something small.

"I said, 'If we're going to have the truly small business, then let's make it a small business that is for people in Massachusetts, by people in Massachusetts,' " she said.

That's why the residency requirement of the license, in particular, was important to Flanagan.

"I really think that when you're trying to implement any kind of regulation . . . you have to really take into account the little guy, the people that are the backbone of their community," she said. ". . . I feel strongly that it's the guy from the hometown whose family's from there — and they have friends and family, and their roots are there — [who is] really going to have a great impact on the area."


Felicia Gans can be reached at felicia.gans@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @FeliciaGans.

Ethiopia launches 12 small-scale solar energy projects - New Business Ethiopia

Posted: 01 Jun 2019 12:00 AM PDT

The Government of Ethiopia has awarded 12 small-scale solar energy development projects to three Chinese and one Spanish firms.

The projects will be built in all parts of the country at a cost of more than 296 million birr (around $10.3 million), according to the agreements Ethiopian Electric Unitility signed on Friday. Of the 12 projects,  three will be built in Oromia, two in Amhara, two in southern region, while Somali, Tigray, Afar, Benishangul Gumuz and Gambella regions will each have one solar project.



Once completed, the projects will help to light more than 67, 700 rural homes, it was noted at the agreement signing ceremony. About 25 projects are under a design phase and the African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved $15 million loan and grant for the projects.

The World Bank Group and AfDB approved $400 million and $100 million grant and credit, respectively, for similar power development projects.

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