FM Nirmala Sitharaman says most MSME dues cleared; govt's capex target on track

FM Nirmala Sitharaman says most MSME dues cleared; govt's capex target on track

FM Nirmala Sitharaman met secretaries of ministries such as road transport and highways, housing and urban development and shipping on Friday.

Nirmala Sitharaman press conference Nirmala Sitharaman press conference

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman held a meeting with secretaries and financial advisors of a few ministries on Friday in Delhi and said that the ministries have cleared most of the dues of goods and services to suppliers, mostly MSMEs. The remaining payments, she added, will be done in the next few days.

Sitharaman also asked ministries to provide detailed capital expenditure plans for the next four quarters. "I have called for ministries to provide their CapEx plans for the next four quarters. The details are expected to come within a week," said the Finance Minister at a press conference. The government has asked for the same as it looks to boost growth with spending push.

Expenditure secretary GC Murmu said that out of the total outstanding dues of Rs 60,000 crore, Rs 40,000 crore has been cleared. He added that the remaining amount will be cleared by the first week of October. 

"At this stage, my intention is to make sure that government does not sit on payments which are due, government does not sit on CapEx which it had planned," said the minister while addressing a press conference after the meeting. "The ministries and PSUs will clear all the non-litigation related dues," she said.

"Government should not sit on overdue payments," Sitharaman said, adding the money should go to people who have been waiting for it. The money should reach the ground, she added.

The secretary further said that most infrastructure ministries have reached 50 per cent of their CapEx target for the current fiscal. Sitharaman also said that the government's capital expenditure was on track and Budget estimates would be met. The consumption was on the rise and credit offtake was growing, which together should result in "buoyancy" in the economy, she added.

During the press conference, Nirmala Sitharaman said that consumption will be strong during the festive season.

The minister is also scheduled to meet the heads of public sector enterprises on Saturday. "Tomorrow, we'll have a separate meeting with different agencies of public sector undertaking and other agencies which come under different ministries," said the minister at a press conference.

Also read: FM Sitharaman meets private banks, NBFCs; measures to boost credit may be announced