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Fifty SFURTI clusters inaugurated in 18 states

Tuesday, 23 Feb 2021
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Union Minister for MSME & Road Transport & Highways Nitin Gadkari inaugurated 50 artisan-based SFURTI clusters, spread over 18 states on 22 February 2021.

In the 50 clusters inaugurated, over 42,000 artisans have been supported in traditional segments of muslin, khadi, coir, handicraft, handlooms, wood craft, leather, pottery, carpet weaving, bamboo, agro processing, tea, etc.

The Ministry of MSME has funded an amount of around Rs 85 crore for development of these 50 clusters. The ministry is implementing a Scheme of Fund for Regeneration of Traditional Industries (SFURTI) with a view to organise traditional industries and artisans into clusters to make them competitive and increase their income.

There is a need to step up the pace of formation of such clusters, since only 82 of the 371 announced so far are actually functional, and a target of 5,000 clusters is easily achievable if red-tape can be reduced.

These clusters have been inaugurated in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Haryana, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Nagaland, Odisha, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal

As on date, there are 371 clusters which have are being funded by the ministry, supporting 2.18 lakh artisans with a total government assistance of Rs 888 crore.  

More than Rs 708 crore has been the budgetary allocation under the scheme, of which more than Rs 567 crore has been released for implementation of the scheme so far. These clusters are spread all over the country covering 248 districts. The ministry aims to support at least one cluster in each district in coming period.

The number of approved clusters in various sectors is -- handicrafts (145), coir (41), bamboo (33), honey (25), food processing (59), khadi (10) and others (58).

SFURTI clusters are of two types i.e., Regular Cluster (500 artisans) with government assistance of up to Rs 2.5 crore and Major Cluster (more than 500 artisans) with government assistance up to Rs five crore.

The artisans are organised into SPVs which can be (i) a Society registered under Societies (Registration) Act 1860 (ii) a Co-operative Society under an appropriate statute (iii) a Producer Company under Section 465 (1) of Companies Act 2013 (18 of 2013), (iv) a Section 8 Company under the Companies Act 2013 (18 of 2013) or (v) a Trust.

Under the scheme, the ministry supports various interventions including setting up infrastructure through Common Facility Centers (CFCs), procurement of new machineries, creating raw material banks, design intervention, improved packaging, improvement of marketing infrastructure, improved skills and capacity development through training and exposure visits, etc.

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