Small and Medium Enterprises
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) represent the vast majority of enterprises worldwide. They are an essential pillar of innovation, economic and social progress as well as job creation. At the same time, they face a multitude of challenges, such as access to finance or the complex regulatory business environment. Access to markets abroad and shortage of skilled labor in a more and more digitalized economy are further concern for SMEs.
These concerns have been increasingly accounted for by many governments. But we need to do more. How can SME be further empowered? How can a better participation of SME in global value chains be facilitated? Specific attention also needs to be given to the implementation of SME-friendly regulations and agreements as well as ensuring full access to the financial markets. The G20 can and has to contribute to a level-playing field that enables SMEs.
B20 Focal Areas
Ease of SME’s Business is a key priority for B20 Germany. Regulatory obstacles must be reduced given SMEs' limited resources to cope with diverse and complex regulatory frameworks. Harmonization and simplification of regulatory systems offer one solution. SMEs must also gain a voice in national trade facilitation committees.
Digitalization has large potential for SMEs, such as operational improvement and cross-border trade. SMEs’ access to digital infrastructure must be accelerated and SMEs’ participation in digital platforms and networks must be fostered.
Finance is the basis for business development. Lacking access to finance, especially in emerging economies is a major constraint for SMEs. Improving financial access not only to bank finance but also alternative financial sources must therefore be prioritized. B20 calls for a rapid implementation of the G20 Action Plan on SMEs.