A forum organized by the Commission on "Improving the business environment: Best practice for start-ups" will be held on 19-20 June 1995 in Paris at the National Assembly. The forum will be opened by Mr. Christos Papoutsis, Commissioner responsible for enterprise policy and SMEs, and Mr. Jean-Pierre Rarrafin, French Minister for Small and Medium Enterprises, Commerce and the Craft Sector. Mr. Jean Arthuis, French Minister for Economic Development, will also participate. The aim of the forum is to identify successful measures and best practice already in place in some Member States, and to exchange ideas and views relating to the legislative and administrative procedures for setting up a business. Improving and simplifying the business environment is an important prerequisite for businesses, particularly for SMEs, in order to encourage growth and the creation of sustainable jobs. This task can be made easier if Member States take account of experience developed in other countries through this concerted action. The forum includes an opening session to discuss the conditions necessary for a successful administrative simplification policy, and three successive plenary sessions focusing on setting up a new business and its first years of development. These sessions will consider issues such as company registration procedures, the legislative environment for new businesses and possible derogations, and the problems of taking on employees. The forum is organized by Directorate-General XXIII, which is responsible for the development of the Union's enterprise policy, in conjunction with a permanent committee of representatives from the Member States and members from the European business organizations. This committee was specifically set up in 1994 as part of the Commission's integrated programme in favour of SMEs and the craft sector to consider ways of improving the business environment so that businesses can operate competitively and take proper advantage of the opportunities offered by the single market. Around 300 participants including officials, business managers and business representatives from all the Member States are expected to take part in the forum.