SMEs are the backbone of the EU economy and have been placed in the focus of European policy following the adoption of the Small Business Act in 2008. This study makes a comprehensive overview of EU support initiatives for SMEs in the period 2007-2015 with the aim to assess the effectiveness of EU SME policies – both in terms of their formulation and implementation.
To enable businesses to perform this role, the EU must provide conditions that make European businesses more competitive, encourage entrepreneurship and ensure favourable conditions for them to innovate, invest, operate and trade. This calls for a business environment that helps prepare for the future, is based on open markets and fair competition and provides enabling and supportive conditions for doing business
Today, and with this speech, I will try to explain who is interested in social business in Europe, what it is, why we need to develop it and how we can do so. Keep in mind these 3 main messages:
• social business can be a solution for economic growth AND social development;
• social business can become DNA for tomorrow's Europe;
• social business can help people to engage in building a sustainable Europe.
The EESC "Smart Islands" project is based on the own-initiative of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) on Smart islands TEN/558.