60 million households will move to middle-income bracket
Mysore/Mysuru: “Microfinance is no longer confined to the ‘micro’ realm; it has evolved into a distinct asset class,” opined Udaya Kumar Hebbar, Managing Director of Credit Access Grameen Limited.
He was delivering the keynote address at the 8th International Economics Conference organised by Shri Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara Institute for Management Development (SDM-IMD) in Mysuru recently.
The conference, themed “Economic Growth and Sustainable Development: Emerging Trends,” witnessed Hebbar’s insights during its inauguration.
Hebbar projected optimism about India’s economic trajectory, stating, “The per capita income in India is anticipated to double by 2030, with 60 million households transitioning to the middle-income bracket during this period. Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, India has demonstrated remarkable resilience and achieved robust growth.”
Highlighting the silent but impactful role of microfinance, Hebbar noted its gradual contribution to narrowing income and livelihood disparities, particularly fostering improved gender parity in rural India. Furthermore, he emphasised the pivotal role Microfinance Institutions play in advancing Sustainable Development Goals, addressing issues such as poverty, quality education, gender equality and access to clean water & sanitation.
In addressing the changing landscape, Hebbar discussed both opportunities and challenges facing the microfinance sector. He expressed confidence in the new harmonised microfinance guidelines, foreseeing them as instrumental in safeguarding customer interests. Hebbar underscored the sector’s role in fostering inclusive growth in the rural economy by extending microcredit to the last mile of society.
Dr. B. Venkatraja, the Conference Chairperson at SDM-IMD, introduced the conference theme, underscoring the delicate balance required between economic growth aspirations and environmental protection for sustainability.
Dr. Mohamed Minhaj, Chairperson of Academic Programmes at SDM-IMD, provided an overview of how technologies and innovations drive the economy.
Over the course of two days, the conference delved into 130 academic research papers presented by scholars from various esteemed institutions. The discussions covered a spectrum of emerging issues and trends related to the economy, growth, and sustainability.