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SME Strategy To Make EU Fit For Future

23 October 2019
by smeunited -- last modified 23 October 2019

Call for a strong European SME Strategy combining competitiveness, fairness and sustainability


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At a meeting with Commissioner and Executive Vice-President-designate Margrethe Vestager, SMEunited President Ulrike Rabmer-Koller explained the importance of a holistic SME Strategy. This strategy should build on the Small Business Act and add digitalisation and greening of the society in the aim of making Europe more competitive. At the same time, it should ensure sufficient funding for those who need it most and be based on the Think Small First principle. This strategy should also include a concrete action plan and monitoring through the European semester.

"We have a specific way of doing business in Europe, with family companies developing a sustainable business on the long term. SMEs play a vital role not only for innovation, growth and welfare. Especially in rural areas these companies are of importance for providing in day to day needs, employment and social cohesion. We must guarantee that in policy making we take the reality of those companies as a basis."

"Regarding access to internal and external markets, uniform implementation and enforcement of rules came up during discussions with SMEunited members as a crucial element to show the added value of the European Union to SMEs." Additionally, President Rabmer-Koller stressed the need to provide the right digital infrastructure and take into account heterogeneity of SMEs concerning the digital and green transformation where they need an enabling legal framework and tailored support measures.

Finally, she called for fairness, referring to the need to tackle late payments, and access to data to ensure SMEs can take up their place in new business models.

SMEunited is the association of Crafts and SMEs in Europe with around 70 member organisations from over 30 European countries. SMEunited represents national cross-sectoral Craft and SME federations, European SME branch organisations and associate members. Combined, it represents more than 12 million enterprises with around 55 million employees across Europe. SMEunited is also a recognised employers' organisation and European Social Partner. SMEunited was formally known as UEAPME.

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