Once the firm has decided on the foremost issues of which product it wants to produce and the location of the industry, the next important step is to select appropriate technology and equipment to produce the same. In addition to this, the source of raw material has to be decided upon. The requirements of all these can either be met through domestic sources or can be imported subject to the regulatory requirements of the Government. The regulatory requirements pertaining to the import procedures vary depending on the item of import. In case of raw materials, the Export Import Policy of the Government regulates imports. However, in the case of technology, the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Policy and the Foreign Technology Transfer Agreements govern the imports.
The firm should do a careful cost and benefit analysis before going ahead with the process of placing the orders to minimize the production costs and hence increasing the profit margins. Various sources of Capital should be explored and the cost of capital should be analysed cautiously.
Once the choice of the product is made, selection of the right process technology becomes important. The process technology required may be :-
While choosing the process technology, the following considerations are essential :-
- The level of skilled workers or complex machines required by the process.
- The quantity of water and / or power required.
- If any process or product patent is needed in order to utilize the selected process technology.
- Any special Pollution or Environmental regulation is to be followed.
- The appropriateness of the technology to the Indian environment and conditions.
Raw Material procurement and planning are critical to success, of a start-up unit. The raw materials required may be:-
- Domestically available (within the country):- As we know that our country is a resource rich country with abundance of specific raw materials in different States. (For details, please refer to 'Investment opportunities and incentives' section). Accordingly appropriate suppliers of raw materials have to be selected.
- Imported from abroad:- For importing the raw materials the Government rules and regulations have to be followed. The imports are regulated by the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Act, 1992. The Act provides for the appointment by the Central Government, of a Director General of Foreign Trade for the purpose of the Act. The DGFT shall advise Central Government in formulating export and import policy and implementing the policy. (For details, please refer to 'Legal Aspects' section).
Whatever be the source of raw materials it must be bought from reputed dealers and agencies only. Before ordering, compare the prices and get quotation from at least 3-4 places and also check whether price is inclusive or exclusive of transportation costs. While receiving the delivery, check the quality and quantity of the materials.
Proper planning is essential because non-availability of the required raw material may result in production hold-ups, idle machinery and manpower. On the other hand if too much is ordered too soon considerable amount of working capital gets locked up. All this will lead to increased production costs. But proper inventory management can lead to manageable cash flow situations. For imported raw material whose lead time are large, proper planning is all the more essential.
Machinery and Equipments
The next important step is choosing and ordering of right machinery and equipments. The machinery and equipments required may be either domestically available or imported from abroad. For importing machinery and equipments, the Government rules and regulations have to be followed. The imports are regulated by the Foreign Trade (Development and Regulation) Act, 1992. The Act provides for the appointment by the Central Government, of a Director General of Foreign Trade for the purpose of the Act. The DGFT shall advise Central Government in formulating export and import policy and implementing the policy. (For details, refer to 'Legal Aspects' section).
Generally, technology or process provides with the necessary specifications relating to machinery and equipment required. Otherwise, an extensive techno-economic survey of the available machinery and equipment may be carried out. International trade fairs and engineering fairs are good places to look at available options. The entrepreneur may also consult experts, dealers / suppliers as well as users, prior to making a selection of equipment and machinery. Many entrepreneurs buy second hand machines and equipments. But this leads to the problem of prevalence of outdated production and management methods hindering the efficient operation of business units. The advice of SISI and NSIC can also be sought.
There are 30 Micro,Small and Medium Enterprises Development Institutes (MSME-DIs) and 28 Branch MSME-DIs (formerly SISIs) set up in State capitals and other industrial cities all over the country. The main objective of National Small Industries Corporation Limited (NSIC) is to provide machinery and equipment to small industrial units offering them long repayment period with moderate rate of interest.
It has been found that small industrialists are unable to install modern machinery and equipment due to lack of investable funds. Hence many schemes and incentives are available to assist them. Now, small scale firms can acquire industrial machinery, office equipment, vehicles, etc, without making full payment through hire purchase. With the help of assets acquired through hire purchase, they can produce and sell. From the earning of production, they can make payments in installment. Ultimately the ownership of assets can be acquired.
National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC) provides machinery and equipment to small scale units on hire purchase basis and on lease basis. NSIC follows the following Hire Purchase procedure and Hire Purchase Scheme for financing plant and machinery to small scale units:
- The hire purchase application is to be made on the prescribed form.
- The Director of Industries of the State under whose jurisdiction the applicant falls, forwards the application to the head office of the NSIC at Delhi with his recommendation and comments.
- All applications for indigenous or imported machines are considered by acceptance committees comprising of the representatives of the Chief Controller of Imports, Development Commissioner, Small Scale Industries and other concerned departments.
- Decisions of these committees are conveyed to the parties concerned with copies to the regional offices of the NSIC and the concerned Directorate of Industries.
- It is open to an applicant whose case has been rejected to get his application reviewed by a high powered committee.
- Once the hirer completes all these formalities, instructions are sent to the suppliers to dispatch the consignment (duly insured for transit risk) to the hirer and to send the R/R or C/R as the case may be, to the regional office.
- The NSIC after ensuring that the hirer has paid all dues, releases the R/R or C/R to him for taking delivery of the machines.
- In case of imported machines, the procedure is slightly different in as much as the shipping documents are sent to the clearing agents for clearing the consignment from the Customs and dispatching it to the hirer.
For more details visit our Section on 'Industry and Services'