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The Ministry of Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Government of India, launched SFURTI to promote MSME cluster development in the country.

Objectives of SFURTI

The aims of the scheme are given here.

  • To organise the traditional industries and artisans into clusters to make them competitive and provide support for
  • To provide sustained employment for traditional industry artisans and rural entrepreneurs.
  • To advance marketability of products of clusters by providing support for new products, design intervention and improved packaging and improvement of marketing infrastructure.

Features of SFURTI

The main highlights of the scheme are given here.

  • The scheme facilitates traditional artisans of the associated clusters with improved skills and capabilities through training and exposure visits.
  • The scheme offers provisions for shared facilities and improved tools and equipment for artisans to promote optimum utilisation of infrastructure facilities.
  • The cluster governance systems are developed with active participation of the stakeholders so that they can gauge the emerging opportunities and challenges and respond coherently.
  • The scheme supports to build innovative and traditional skills, improved technologies, advanced processes, market intelligence and new models of public-private partnerships. This replicates the models of cluster-based regenerated conventional industries.
  • The scheme assists in the establishment of a multi-product cluster with an integrated value chain and an effective market-driven approach for viability and long term sustainability of the group.
  • SFURTI ensures convergence from the design stage with each activity of the cluster formation and operations.
  • The scheme identifies and understands the cluster’s target customers, understands their needs and aspirations and then develops product lines to meet their requirements. A substantial focus is given to the buyer segment that places a premium on eco-friendly, natural, ethically sourced and the uniqueness of the Khadi and the VI products.
  • The scheme develops specific product lines out of the currently offered diversified basket of various products that are based on the understanding of the target consumer segment. A brand unification exercise has to be done to maximise the value.
  • It generates a paradigm shift from a supply-driven selling model to a market drive in a model with the right branding, focus product mix and correct positioning and accurate cost to make the offerings holistic and favourable for each focus categories.
  • The scheme considers E-commerce as a significant marketing channel given the outreach and the growing market penetration of E-commerce, the is a requirement to devise a quick strategy to make its presence felt in the E-retail space.

Target Sectors and Potential Beneficiaries

The target sectors and potential beneficiaries of the scheme are as follows.

  1. Artisans, workers, raw material providers, machinery makers, entrepreneurs, institutional and private development service (PDS) providers.
  2. Artisan guilds cooperatives, Self-Help Groups (SHGs), consortiums networks of enterprises, enterprise associations etc.

Eligibility for Selection of Clusters

The selection of clusters is made depending on the geographical concentration that should be around 500 beneficiary families of artisans/ micro enterprises, traders, suppliers of raw materials, service providers etc. that are located within one or two revenue sub-divisions in a district. The clusters would be from the khadi, coir and village industries including leather and pottery. The growth in production and generation of employment opportunities will be taken into consideration under selected clusters under SFURTI. The geographical distribution of the clusters across the country has to be at least 10 per cent in Northern regions that will be taken into consideration while viewing selecting clusters.

Project Interventions

SFURTI covers three types of intervention namely soft interventions, hard interventions and thematic interventions.

Soft Interventions

  • General awareness
  • Counselling
  • Motivation and trust building
  • Skill Development and capacity building
  • Institution development
  • Exposure visits
  • Markets promotion initiatives
  • Design and product development
  • Participation in workshops, seminars and training programmes on technology up-gradation

Hard Interventions

  • Creation of facilities like multiple facilities for multiple products and packaging whenever required.
  • Common Facility Centres (CFCs)
  • Raw material banks (RMBs)
  • Up-gradation of production infrastructure
  • Tools and technology up-gradation
  • Warehousing facility
  • Training centre
  • Value addition and processing centre

Thematic Interventions

Cross-cutting thematic interventions at the sector level comprising several clusters in the same sector with the inclusion of several clusters in the same industry with the emphasis on both domestic and international markets. This includes brand building and promotion campaign, new media marketing, e-commerce initiative and innovation.

Financial Assistance

The financial support granted for any project shall be a maximum of Rs. 8 Crore.

  • For heritage clusters (1000-2500 artisans), a budget limit of Rs. 8 crores would be provided.
  • For significant clusters (500-1000 artisans), a budget limit of Rs. 3 crore would be provided.
  • For a mini cluster (upto 500 artisans), a budget limit of Rs. 1.50 crore would be the budget limit.
  • For NER/ Jammu and Kashmir and Hill States, there will be a 50% reduction in the number of artisans per cluster.

Scheme Steering Committee (SSC)

The Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) will act as the coordinating Ministry that provides an overall policy, coordination and management support to the scheme. SSC will be managed under the chairmanship of the MSME Secretary.

Nodal Agencies (NAS)

The nodal agencies for this scheme would be

  1. Khadi and Village Industries Commission – Khadi and Village Industry clusters
  2. Coir Board – Coir based clusters

Technical Agencies (TAs)

Established national-level agencies with proven expertise in artisanal and small enterprise cluster development will be considered as Technical Agencies (TAs). This agency provides close handholding and implementation support to the SFURTI clusters.

Implementing Agencies (IAs)

The implementing agencies would be non-Government organisations (NGOs), institutions of the Central and State Governments and semi-Government institutions, field functionaries of the State and Central Government, Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) etc. with appropriate expertise to undertake cluster development. One IA will be assigned for one cluster unless it is an agency with State-wide coverage. The selection of IAs are based on the regional reputation and experience of working at the grass-roots level will be made by the Nodal Agencies (NAs), considering the transparent criteria.