MSMEs are our priority: Canara Bank | SupportBiz

Finance Forum

MSMEs are our priority: Canara Bank

Generating finance is a big issue for MSMEs. Knowing about these issues from a banker himself is extremely interesting for every entrepreneur. S Sureshkumar, DGM of Canara Bank, shared his views on MSME financing and his organisation’s focus towards the same, in an exclusive discussion with SupportBiz.

He  also shared some key trends in the financing domain for MSMEs and the  bank’s plans for this sector.

 Edited excerpts:

What importance do Indian MSMEs carry for Canara Bank?

MSMEs are an integral part of the economic system in India as well as in other parts of the world. Banking organisations have set their targets to cover this sector comprehensively, and MSMEs are  the focal point for almost every bank in India. For Canara Bank as well, MSMEs hold great prominence. In order to treat them well, we have  branches that can handle SMEs in an exclusive manner. Their issues are different, and the  opportunities in this sector are huge, so they need special attention.  We are providing the  same to the sector.

 What  are the challenges that SMEs are facing with regards to their financing needs?

There is no doubt that Indian MSMEs are facing challenges in doing business. One of the main challenges that they are facing  is  access  to finance. Although, as a banker, I would feel that finances are available and accessing  it is not a problem, the fact is that, in this area,  a gap does exist between banks and  entrepreneurs. This gap must be removed.  To achieve this, banks have set up policies for SMEs, and the implementation of these policies  is also happening. 

How is Canara Bank helping MSMEs?

 We consider  MSMEs as one of  our  biggest priorities.  We have a dedicated, well-defined MSME lending policy,  which we have adopted  in tune with the government of India’s guidelines as per MSMED Act, 2006.

We also work very closely with SME clusters across the country. We have 388 branches operating in these SME clusters. These branches have  a special focus  towards the SME entrepreneurs. Apart from this, we also work for the revival of sick units.

What is the best possible way to  bridge  the gap between  bankers and  entrepreneurs?

To deal with this challenge, both banks  and SMEs need to play a greater and more pro-active role  at various levels. While banks  should consider  the  MSME sector as a priority  one, MSMEs,  specifically the entrepreneur community,  should come forward to enhance their knowledge.  SME associations can become enablers in this direction. They can act as catalysts in bridging the  gap between the two parties. I would urge  SME associations to organize special camps to promote awareness about various financing schemes offered by banks to small firms.