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120th Annual General Meeting of Merchant’s Chamber of Commerce & Industry (MCCI)

Merchant’s Chamber of Commerce & Industry hosted its 120th Annual General Meeting (AGM) with Dr. Partha Chatterjee, Hon’ble Minister of Industry, Commerce & Enterprises, Information Technology & Electronics and Parliament Affairs, Government of West Bengal and Shri Chandranath Sinha, Hon’ble Minister of MSME & Textiles, Government of West Bengal on December 30, 2021 at 12.45 p.m. at Ball Room, The Oberoi Grand.

 Shri Aakash Shah, President, MCCI in his Welcome Address shared that Bengal, today has all that it takes to become one of the top 3 states in terms of GSDP. Even today, Bengal is the 6th largest economy in India, with its GDP growing at a CAGR of over 10% over the last decade. The able leadership shown by our Hon’ble Chief Minister and her cabinet of Ministers over the two years is beyond comparison.
 
For an industrial development plan of West Bengal, the focus must be on strengthening its MSME base, and that too in the critical sectors of traditional industries. West Bengal has the second largest MSME base (14% of all MSMES) in India. According to official statements, The Government of West Bengal increased the infrastructure spend in the state by almost five times with Rs 1,758 crore expenditure in 2011 going up to Rs 9,553 crore in 2019.
 
Shri Shah lastly mentioned that it is well understood that the State agencies can at best play the role of a facilitator for industries; while it is up to private sector entrepreneurs to utilize these facilities to build the industries. Certain institutional lacunae need to be addressed to encourage private investors to utilize the physical infrastructures offered in the state.
 
With these few words, Shri Shah requested the guests to address the audience.
 
Dr. Partha Chatterjee, Hon’ble Minister of Industry, Commerce & Enterprises, Information Technology & Electronics and Parliament Affairs, Government of West Bengal in his address congratulated MCCI on its 120th AGM. Dr. Chatterjee mentioned that Bengal has the potential to achieve large-scale industrialization.
 
Dr. Chatterjee informed that the State has organized virtual helpline for the new investors through “Shipa Sathi” Scheme and the “Pather Sathi” Scheme in cooperation of WBDIC. He informed that Bengal with its strategic location facilities has the potential to be the gateway of North East and South East Asia.
 
Dr. Chatterjee mentioned that the State Government was focused on developing the industrial sector in Bengal and asked for greater co-operation from associations and Chambers in this regard.
 
Shri Chandranath Sinha, Hon’ble Minister of MSME & Textiles, Government of West Bengal in his Address said that the State has 89 lakhs MSMEs making the state one of the biggest MSME bases in the country. The Government has come with various schemes for the improving the MSMEs and has already invested in infrastructure of Industrial Parks and MSME Clusters.
 
He also mentioned that the Government has provided new investors with financial support through formal financial institutions. He also added during last 3 years the Government has offered aid of INR 2 lakh 13 thousand to MSMEs in times of crisis.
 
The Session ended by offering Vote of Thanks by Shri Rishabh Kothari, Senior Vice President, MCCI to the guests.

Addressing the Media, the newly appointed President Mr. Rishabh C. Kothari, MCCI said, “I am honored to assume the role of the President of this august and prestigious organization. Today, as global as well as Indian Industry is at cross-roads of both unprecedented challenges and their emergent opportunities, MCCI, which completes 120 years this year, shall continue to reinvent itself and serve as a catalyst in supporting the business community in Eastern India to both meet these challenges and also convert adversity into opportunity. Considering the pandemic crisis, it is our endeavour to provide opportunities for growth and development for the members through 4E’s ~ Explore, Educate, Empower and Enable and expecting that this shall naturally lead to the 5th E ~ Excellence in all spheres.”

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