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Assistance for craft and small enterprises

The European Commission, DG XXIII, has published a call for proposals for assistance to craft enterprises and small enterprises.

As part of the third multiannual programme for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the European Union (1997-2000), the Commission is implementing a project aimed at promoting assistance to craft and small enterprises, in particular through measures in favour of business women, women setting up enterprises and wives working in the enterprise (outside the rural environment), young entrepreneurs and/or enterprises made up of disadvantaged groups in the European Union.

This approach is in line with the measures announced in the Commission's communication "The craft industry and small enterprises, keys to growth and employment in Europe" and, in particular, Chapter IV on the follow up by the Commission to the Berlin Conference.

Under this call, the Commission intends to co-finance projects relating to the following objectives:

- Promotion of transnational cooperation through the establishment of partnerships, and the setting up and strengthening of networks in favour of business women and young entrepreneurs;

- Joint participation of small and craft enterprises in fairs and shows in the countries of the EEA;

- Promotion of the European culture and spirit of enterprise;

- Financing and access to credit for small enterprises and craft enterprises;

- Vocational training for craftsmen and founders of small enterprises;

- Access to information and services through the development of computer applications;

- Training in European management for advisers from craft organizations and organizations for small businesses and subsequent definition of a general training programme for extension to all Member States.

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