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Commission adopts programme under the SME initiative for Thuringia

The Commission is to provide ECU 29 million to support the adjustment of small and medium-sized enterprises in Thuringia to the single market. A programme to this effect has been adopted, on a proposal from Monika Wulf-Mathies, Commissioner responsible for regional policies, u...
The Commission is to provide ECU 29 million to support the adjustment of small and medium-sized enterprises in Thuringia to the single market. A programme to this effect has been adopted, on a proposal from Monika Wulf-Mathies, Commissioner responsible for regional policies, under the Community Initiative for SMEs.

The total value of the programme is ECU 57,450,000. Of this, ECU 29 million will be awarded from Community resources (structural funds), ECU 12,675,000 from national public resources and ECU 15,775,000 from the private sector. In terms of the volume of Community funding, the SME programme for Thuringia is the third-largest of the 16 programmes planned for Germany.

Under the Community Initiative for SMEs, the following priority areas will be assisted in Thuringia:

- Quality assurance: notably through the introduction of comprehensive quality management and training courses to enable employees of individual firms to undertake better quality management;
- Training and further training: training and information events (e.g. workshops, seminars) dealing with technical and organizational issues which are involved in the use of innovative information and communication technologies;
- Environmental protection and efficient use of energy: the promotion of environmentally aware management, (management of environmental issues, environmental audits, environmental balance sheets), as well as career-development training and short seminars to promote the concept of sustainable development;
- Development of new markets: provision of information concerning international commerce, e.g. activities that help to establish contacts with foreign enterprises, the setting-up of databases containing data on country- and industry-specific markets and the promotion of consulting services to small businesses and craft firms in the field of foreign commercial relations.
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