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Highlights of the First Policy for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship

National-Policy-for-Skill-Development-and Entrepreneurship

Highlights of the First Policy for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship

The Government of India has recently unveiled the first National Policy for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship 2015 in order to empower the younger generation. The policy aims at providing various support for the development of Entrepreneurs who will drive job growth and for the development of a skilled workforce to create “Skilled India”. In this article, we mainly look at the support for Entrepreneurship extended through the policy for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship 2015.

Overview of the 2015 National Policy for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship

Educate and Equip Entrepreneurs

Educating and equipping of potential and early-stage entrepreneurs across India has been identified as the main area of support in the policy for skill development and entrepreneurship. To achieve this mission the Government has proposed for the development of a world-class education curriculum in Partnership with Global Experts on Entrepreneurship.

The curriculum for Entrepreneurship will help the Entrepreneur acquire the skills needed to start and manage a business. The course is proposed to deliver to all potential Entrepreneurs through a blend of online and experimental learning methodology at no cost. Therefore, the Government envisages that the course is an Open Online Course which can be taken as and when needed by Students and Business People. In addition, entrepreneurship education will be integrated into the mainstream curriculum in nearly 3,000 colleges around India and delivered at Industrial clusters across the nation through 50 nodal Entrepreneurship Hubs (E-Hubs).

Connect Entrepreneurs to Peers, Mentors, Incubators

Connecting Entrepreneurs with Peers, Mentors and Incubators has been identified as a key focus area in the Policy for skill development and entrepreneurship. The policy has proposed the creation of web and mobile-based technology platform for connecting young entrepreneurs and students with other entrepreneurs, business owners, mentors incubators, funding agencies and basic service providers.

Entrepreneurs will be able to a logo and connect to each other through this Entrepreneur’s social network. In addition to helping Entrepreneurs network, the social network will also allow provide information about government services and provide the information required for running a business.

Support Entrepreneurs through Entrepreneurship Hubs (E-­Hubs)

The policy for skill development and entrepreneurship 2015 has proposed the establishment of a national network of Entrepreneurship Hubs (E-Hubs). E-Hubs will be set up as a national network comprising of one national, 30 states, 50 nodal and 3000 college-based hubs. The aim of these E-Hubs will be to align Government and Inter-ministerial coordination to improve Entrepreneurship Effort with industry trends and promote flagship programs like “Make in India“, Smart Cities, Skill India, Digital India, Green India and Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan.

Catalyse a Culture Shift to Encourage Entrepreneurship

The 2015 policy for skill development and entrepreneurship will aim to create a cultural shift in India and promote Entrepreneurship at all levels. The policy aims to achieve this objective by inviting keynote speakers to share best practices, creating internship opportunities and exchange trips for Indian Entrepreneurs to global Entrepreneurship hot places like Silicon Valley and Israel. In addition, the policy has proposed the creation of Brand Ambassadors to champion Entrepreneurial Culture in India and awards young Entrepreneurs.

Encourage Entrepreneurship among Underrepresented Groups

Special focus will be given for the inclusion of scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, minorities, differently-abled and regionally underrepresented areas including a large part of Eastern and Northern India in Entrepreneurship programs. The policy has provided for prioritized delivery of entrepreneurship education programs to the underrepresented groups and operation of mobilization drives to enrol underrepresented members in the online entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Further, the policy also proposes the creation of a pool of experts to promote entrepreneurship and act as mentors for these underrepresented groups. In addition, it is proposed that access to Government supported testing facilities and infrastructure be offered to these groups at a subsidized rate.

Promote Entrepreneurship amongst Women

The 2015 policy for skill development and entrepreneurship has promised special Efforts for the encouragement of women entrepreneurship in India through appropriate incentive for women-owned businesses under the public procurement process. This will include providing mentorship and support system for women entrepreneurs in existing business centres and incubators along with access to capital at relaxed credit terms.

Improve Ease of Doing Business

Improving ease of doing business in India has been made the main area of focus in the 2015 national policy for skill development and entrepreneurship. The policy proposes the following steps for improving the ease of doing business in India:

  • Creating a business-friendly environment with easy entry and exit procedures to encourage entrepreneurial activity.
  • Introducing Unique Enterprise Number (UEN) that a new enterprise could use for various registrations including taxes, labour laws and social security.
  • Introducing an online Composite Application Form (CAF) that will help entrepreneurs file a single application for obtaining all approvals and clearances from various government authorities.
  • Encouraging States to strengthen existing ‘Single Window System’ with a High Power Committee empowered to give all necessary clearances for setting up a business.
  • Converting the present District Industries Centres (DICs) into Business Development Centres (BDCs) with an objective to provide technical and procedural handholding support and counselling to pre-­start­up, nascent, early start-up and growth ventures.
  • Permitting flexibility to startups in ‘hiring and retaining’ workforce for operational adjustments and rationalization during the first three years of operation of an enterprise, assuming that by the end of three years it will either stabilize and grow or become sick and close down.
  • Allowing easy exit to enterprises if they have been in operation for less than three years. Such enterprises will be facilitated to close their operations, if not found viable, within a period of three months. Creation of Special fast track court to expedite the process of closure of such firms.
  • Considering tax incentives to new and existing entrepreneurs.

Improve Access to Finance

The 2015 national policy for skill development and entrepreneurship has proposed to reinvigorate the flow of credit to deserving entrepreneurs. The policy proposes the following interventions to improve access to finance for Entrepreneurs:

  • Ensuring that credit delivery norms are met by financial institutions without compromising the quality of the projects submitted for credit.
  • Strengthening venture capital companies in the quasi-­public sector by infusing capital through equity participation.
  • Incentivizing Angel financing by providing appropriate rebates on capital gains made by investors.
  • Promoting a ‘rescue’ culture by revisiting bankruptcy rules and facilitate counselling and advisory service to troubled firms by appropriately addressing legal status.
  • Encouraging national and state bodies viz. National Scheduled Caste Finance and Development Corporation (NSCFDC), National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation (NMDFC), National Backward Classes Finance and Development Corporation (NBCFDC), National Scheduled Tribes Finance and Development Corporation (NSTFDC) to provide credit to micro-enterprise startups launched by their target population.
  • Explore the possibility of setting up a National Fund for the unorganised sector, as recommended by the National Commission for Enterprise in the unorganised sector in 2007, to hasten the process of achieving inclusive growth of entrepreneurship.
  • Encouraging and support financial institutions to develop innovative micro­level financial tools to enhance investments in micro ventures. Further, they would also be encouraged to increase lending in rural areas through self­help groups and innovative microfinancing.

Foster Social Entrepreneurship and Grassroots Innovations

The 2015 policy for skill development and entrepreneurship has identified social enterprises as an important business instrument to address the issues of poverty, unemployment and inequity in society, through socially-oriented business innovations. Therefore, the policy will encourage universities and academic institutions to launch a course on ‘Social Entrepreneurship’, including through online distance education, to actively promote social entrepreneurship in the country. Further, a social capital market place will be promoted by offering fiscal incentives to attract investors and make provision for funding support under a separate scheme(s) like a social venture fund, to facilitate social entrepreneur’s access to credit.

The policy has also proposed the creation of grass­root technology innovation hubs to harness the innovation potential of grass­roots innovators. Also, the policy aims to promote and encourage grassroots innovations and assist innovators to commercialise and up­scale their products and services. through the national network of E­-Hubs and other platforms.

For further assistance and enquiry, the readers can reach below address:

Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship
Govt. of India,
Shram Shakti Bhawan,
Rafi Marg,
New Delhi-110001
Telephone: 011-23465852