European small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) should better profit from fast growing emerging markets, such as in China, India, Russia or in regions like South East Asia and Latin America. This is the key issue to overcome the crisis addressed in the European Commission communication ‘Small Business, Big World – a new partnership to help SMEs seize global opportunities’ presented today. The priority for Europe now is to overcome the crisis boosting competitiveness and growth. Major markets such as China, India, Russia and Brazil, with strong growth rates and potential represent significant opportunities for EU companies. Exports outside the EU to expanding markets could trigger new dynamism for European economy. Internationalisation is the step SMEs need to take and to seize these opportunities.
The objectives of the new EU strategy are
To provide SMEs with easily accessible and adequate information on how to expand their business outside the EU.
To improve the coherence of support activities.
To improve the cost-effectiveness of support activities.
To fill existing gaps in support services.
To establish a level playing field and provide equal access for SMEs from all EU Member States.
The Commission will play a crucial role in the coordination and governance of this process, also through setting up a periodic ‘SME Internationalisation Forum’ and with a specific focus on this topic at the regular meetings of Member States’ SME Envoys. In all these activities the representatives of the private sector will be involved.