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MSMEs Can Make The Difference Between Life And Death

Wednesday, 21st October 2020


The power of MSMEs was brought home to officials of the Uganda High Commission in New Delhi who visited one small manufacturing company whose products are highly sought: from Africa to America through Europe including Russia; and thence to the Asia and Austro-Pacific corners of the world. The Mission is keen to learn from Indian models of MSMEs in order to convey to headquarters aspects of the model which could be adapted to the Ugandan push for industrialisation under the Third National Plan (NDP III) of Vision 2040. Shri Umiya Surgical Pvt Ltd is an Indian small enterprise firm which manufactures disposable surgical appliances for those critical moments in surgery when infusions, transfusions and expulsions of blood and other body fluids make the difference between life and death.

The surgical support kits SMSE is located in Vatva, one of the busy economic production zones at the fringes of  Ahmedabad, the undisputed commercial hub of the west Indian State of Gujarat. Its labour force of about 30 workers, most of who are females, produces critical clinic or hospital medical support kits for: central venous access and dialysis; infusion and transfusion; for urology; for anaesthesia; general surgery; and for gastroenterology. This small company boasts of setting new standards in healthcare disposables and manufactures such equipment as double chamber blood administration sets; Ryles tubes with funnel and luer connectors: Sharp-NV single use infusion sets; single, double, triple and four lumen catheter sets; peritoneal transfusion dialysis kits; T- oxygenators; chest and abdominal draining kits; and many more such kits for delicate and sensitive medical use.

Given the critical yet delicate nature of its products, UMIYA has sought clearance from many national medical supplies boards and standards bodies in all the 40 countries it supplies the kits. UMIYA surgical support kits are supplied to the thirteen African countries of Algeria, Angola, Chad, Burundi, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mauritius, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa and Zambia.

The visit to UMIYA was one of a number of programmed visits to manufacturing/industry plants during a commercial diplomacy tour undertaken by the Mission from 19thto 23rd October. At the start of the tour, the Mission interacted with the Commissioner and staff of the first economic production zone set up by the Government of India in 1965. The Kandla Special Economic Zone in Gandhidham blazed a trail for similar export-oriented economic production units in the country. Together with special economic zones subsequently established by Indian private capital, Kandla and other government sponsored zones have propelled Indian economic growth; and are set to provide a new impetus to her post-COVID economic recovery.

In pursuit of agro-processing as the leading industrialisation sector, the Mission held discussions with the Ahmedabad Textile Industry Research Association; finding it appropriate to link this research body with a number of related organisations in Uganda including the Uganda Industrial Research and Development Organisation as well as with the universities of science and technology. Discussions with the Uganda Gujarat Business Association focussed on strategies for MSME entry into the agro- and other manufacturing areas of the Ugandan economy. The Mission team consisting of the Head of Mission; Ms Sophie Birungi Secretary for Commercial Diplomacy and Ms Jane Emiru, Secretary for Administration, is set to tour the Indian dairy giant plant, Amul Dairy Cooperative, and to take  cooperatives-led economic growth lessons from this highly successful Indian cooperative.