The Rajya Sabha gives its approval to the amendments to the factoring law, on Thursday. These amendments will enable as many as 9,000 non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) to participate in the factoring market, instead of just 7 now. The move will give a boost in cash flow to small businesses, said finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
Earlier, the Lok Sabha already cleared the Factoring Regulation (Amendment) Bill, 2020, on Monday. Speaking on the Bill in the Rajya Sabha, the finance minister said, “You can imagine the number of MSMEs that will directly benefit because of this.”
What does Factoring mean?
Essentially, factoring is a transaction where an entity (like MSME) sells its receivables (i.e., dues from a customer) to a third party (a ‘factor’ like a bank or NBFC) and collects immediate funds. It helps a firm to fulfill its working capital requirement. Many MSMEs, participate in the factoring business with receivables. It helps MSMEs whose payments against their supplies are stuck.
However, due to certain restrictive provisions in the extant law, necessary amendments were brought in to widen the participation of entities, in the factoring business. These entities, especially NBFCs will help in expanding the avenues of working capital credit to even small businesses. The Bill also empowers the central bank to monitor and create norms for better oversight of the $6-billion factoring market.
According to a report of the parliamentary standing committee on finance, which endorsed the Bill. Despite the growth in recent years, the factoring market accounts for only 0.2% of India’s GDP. The numbers are way behind the comparable developing economies such as Brazil (4.1%) and China (3.2%). Moreover, the factoring market worldwide will see a projection and reach $ 9.2 trillion by 2025.
The report submitted by the House panel in February stressed the need for the RBI to build sufficient regulatory resources to ensure effective supervision of factoring activities. This becomes more important than ever before, with the implementation of the new norms. Because, a large number of players may take part in such businesses now, after the amendments.
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