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FP6

Communication from the commission to the council, the European parliament, the [...], Implementing the Community Lisbon Programme: Financing SME Growth - Adding European Value, COM(2006) 349 final

Funded under: FP6-SME

Abstract

The partnership for growth and jobs is the flagship policy of the European Commission. Its success depends on Europe's small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) achieving their potential, for they are crucial in fostering the entrepreneurship, competition and innovation that leads to sustainable growth and development. Further, the conclusions of the spring 2006 European Council emphasised that a fully integrated financial market and sufficient access to finance are crucial for the growth of small and medium sized enterprises. The Lisbon process offers a framework within which to improve access to finance, through reforms at national and EU levels.
This improvement is needed despite the fact that the features of a world class environment for SME finance can already be found in many Member States. In the recently published world top 20 ranking on capital access, half are Member States. One of the main challenges is therefore to spread good practices across the EU.
In improving access to finance, the diversity of European SMEs is an asset. They are as different in their cultures as in the ways they innovate. Some provide cutting-edge technology, while others make incremental adaptation of processes and products or develop new marketing strategies. Still others hardly innovate at all, yet their contribution to society is indispensable. This diversity entails different financing needs of individual SMEs. It also creates potential for Member States to improve their policies by learning good practices from each other, so making access to both risk capital and debt finance easier.

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Record Number: 8100 / Last updated on: 2006-09-08
Category: COM DOCUMENT
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