Saturday, January 28

IKEA to make Bengal a sourcing hub for global ops

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IKEA, the Swedish home furnishing giant with global revenue of over 38 billion euro (Rs 3 lakh crore), will make Bengal one of its procurement hubs in India for its worldwide operations. The state finance and industries minister Amit Mitra disclosed this at the concluding session of State MSME Conclave here on Tuesday. IKEA India project leader (new business development) Ritesh Singh, who was present at the conclave, indicated that West Bengal featured in its procurement plan from India. IKEA has opened its first store in the country in Hyderabad recently.

“We met top officials of IKEA and they have plans for our state,” Mitra said. According to a presentation made by Singh, IKEA will procure Rs 2,000 crore worth of materials from India in the area of bamboo and natural fibre from the MSME sector. Mitra also indicated that an IKEA store may also come up in Kolkata in future. “We cannot disclose details but we have had discussions with IKEA officials,” he added.

IKEA apart, companies from US, Denmark, Netherlands, Brazil, Switzerland, Germany, France and Australia have booked orders from MSME exhibitors that participated in the conclave. According to the finance minister, the total order placed during the two-day meet was worth Rs Rs 113 crore. The products that were ordered include wall decor, storage box made of natural fibre, terracotta lamp, recycled fabric, wooden furniture, gift products, souvenirs and Christmas decor.

Elaborating on funding for MSMEs, Mitra said that following a suggestion made by chief minister Mamata Banerjee, state co-operative banks would explore financing opportunities in the sector. According to him, commercial banks have lent Rs 44,000 crore in 2017-18 against a target of Rs 38,000 crore. This year, the state government has set a target of Rs 50,000 crore from MSME lending.

“Over the next two years, the lending target will go up to Rs 80,000 crore and I belive it can be achieved. Total MSME lending in the state in last seven years has been Rs 1.74 lakh crore,” he said. Commenting on the leather industry, he said revenue from the sector would increase from Rs 13,500 crore now to Rs 25,000 crore in a couple of years.

State MSME secretary Alapan Bandyopadhyay said the state had identified 2,000 acre for 30 MSME clusters. Currently, there are 53 MSME clusters in the state.

Source: Times of India

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