The Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs), Crafts and Family Business Category is currently made up of 40 Committee members, belonging to the Employers' Group and the Various Interests Group.
The category has appointed Pietro Francesco De Lotto, an Italian member of the Employers' Group, as spokesperson. The category's secretariat is provided by the Employers' Group.
The category's overarching goal is to monitor all aspects related to SME policy, with particular emphasis on the specific needs of crafts and family businesses. We want to focus on these crucial economic and social agents.
Over the last decade, SMEs have helped to sustain investments, while at the same time maintaining employment rates and overcoming, often with great difficulty, the financial constraints of a restricted credit market and unfair late payment practices.
Nevertheless, SMEs remain the real backbone of the European economy. In recent years, they have been faced with new economic and industrial developments. They will have to deal with many challenges in the near future. Innovation and digitalisation, vocational skills and easier access to financial markets are needed. Overregulation and administrative burdens should be severely curtailed.
The outdated definition of SMEs needs to be adapted so as to reflect the current diversified nature of these kinds of enterprises.
Meanwhile, the concept of "crafts" is another issue that needs to be dealt with. We must think about craft companies as having the entrepreneurial value of custom manufacturing. As such, the size of a company should not determine whether it can be (legally) classified as a craft company.