European Entrepreneurship Forum: employers call for "new opening" for SMEs

A fair, competitive and sustainable business environment that encourages enterprises to grow innovate, invest and trade – this is what representatives of the European employers ask from the next European Commission and Member States. The participants of the European Entrepreneurship Forum taking place in Bucharest agreed that it is time for a political recognition of SMEs – shifting from "think small first" approach to "act small first" principle.

During the Forum, Presidents of the EESC Employers' Group, SMEunited and Romanian National Council of SMEs (CNIPMMR) signed in the presence of the President of Romania the Bucharest Declaration. The document contains a set of proposals for the policy makers to boost entrepreneurship in the European Union and to allow SMEs to flourish.

It is thanks to entrepreneurs that citizens can enjoy the European way of life. It is the policy makers' role to provide businesses with conditions to grow. Let's not forget about it just a few weeks before the European elections. We call for a competitive business environment that encourages enterprises to innovate, invest and trade, said Jacek P. Krawczyk, President of the EESC Employers' Group.

Europe needs a new SME policy strategy covering all types of enterprises and using a cross-cutting policy approach, said SMEunited President Ulrike Rabmer-Koller. In her view, “SMEs are ready to ensure Europe’s future and to seize the opportunities of new challenges like digitalisation and circular economy. This requires Europe to provide them with a modern legislative framework without unnecessary administrative burdens and a facilitating environment ensuring the development of the right skills, financial support, future-proof infrastructure and standardisation.”

By signing the Bucharest Declaration we mark a landmark moment for the European entrepreneurship. Our generation strives for Entrepreneurial Europe 2030, this is a project that we bestow to our future generations!, added Florin Jianu, the President of CNIPMMR.

The declaration raises the issue of access to finance, to markets and skilled workforce, the challenge of red tape that companies are facing as well as digitalisation of SMEs. It also formulates SMEs expectations towards the next EU budget and its programmes. The full text of the declaration is available via the following link.

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Declaration of Bucharest on the occasion of the European Entrepreneurship Forum