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National SMEs Programme, European Business Network reinforce cooperation

ABU DHABI, 19th November, 2018 (WAM) -- The National Programme for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises the executive arm of small and medium-sized enterprises, SMEs, operating under the umbrella of the Ministry of Economy, organised an introductory workshop, in cooperation with the European Business Network of the European Commission.

The workshop, which was attended by over 25 representatives of funding institutions and organisations that support Emirati entrepreneurs, presented the services and facilitation provided by the network, as well as the programme’s efforts to link 1,650 registered entrepreneurs to the network’s services.

The workshop also identified various types of innovations and made suggestions on how policy-makers can utilise these innovations to benefit SMEs, through three key pillars.

The workshop is the first of its kind and is the outcome of the dialogue between European Union, EU, and Gulf Cooperation Council, GCC, countries about economic diversity and development and how to support entrepreneurs and owners of SMEs, to motivate them and enhance their performance, as well as to improve productivity and create an environment for growth.

Dr. Adib Al Afifi, Director of the Programme, said that creating joint development mechanisms and programmes with the network will support the programme’s efforts to assist Emirati entrepreneurs, connect them to international markets, and explore the best relevant practices.

He added that the network offers a wide range of services and facilitations while pointing out that membership to the network has numerous advantages, including the opportunity to communicate with its 11,000 member SMEs and participate in around 7,000 monthly bilateral trade meetings and international exhibitions.

Stefan Kraxner, Head of the Trade and Investment Team of the European Commission, stated that the network was launched in February 2008 by the 'Sustainable Development Committee' of the commission, with the aim of encouraging competitiveness and innovation among SMEs.

WAM/Esraa Ismail/Nour Salman