On 16 May, the OECD is holding a meeting in the Azerbaijani capital Baku to discuss the 2020 Small Business Act for Europe (SBA) Assessment, organised in the framework of the EU-funded project ‘EU4Business: From Policies to Action’.
The Small Business Act for Europe (SBA) is an overarching framework for EU policy on SMEs. It aims to improve the approach to entrepreneurship in Europe, simplify the regulatory and policy environment for SMEs, and remove the remaining barriers to their development.
The SBA Assessment monitors the progress in the implementation of the ten principles of the Small Business Act for Europe and measures convergence towards EU practices and standards. The third cycle of the SBA assessment for the Eastern Partner Countries was launched in September 2018. The assessment builds on the established methodology and process of previous assessment rounds, but has been revised to incorporate new elements aiming at broadening the scope of the publication to allow for an evaluation of the overall business climate conditions and to more accurately reflect private sector perspectives.
The SBA public-private reconciliation meeting on 16 May will provide an opportunity for the OECD and its partners to share the initial findings of the SBA assessment by thematic pillar and to discuss the main information gaps, as well as cross-check the validity of the findings.
It will also offer a platform to discuss initial policy recommendations, encouraging the participants to comment and share their views regarding future priorities for SME development in the country. The OECD will also briefly present the SBA assessment process and structure and elaborate on next steps leading to the SME Policy Index 2020 publication.
The SBA public-private reconciliation meeting will bring together SME policy stakeholders. This includes government representatives from line ministries (i.e. Ministries of Economy, Education, Labour) and government agencies (i.e. SME agency, innovation agency), as well as representatives from the private sector, academia and other international organisations.
The meeting will have 2 parts. The first will provide an opportunity to inform participants about the SBA assessment process and structure, including information on main data sources and a brief explanation of the underlying methodology. The government will shed light on the use of the SBA assessment for the country’s overall reform agenda. Highlights from the statistical sheets collected will be presented as part of the country context, as well as next steps leading to the publication of the SME Policy Index 2020.
The second part of the meeting will be dedicated to sharing key findings of the SBA assessment by thematic pillar, discuss the main information gaps and cross-check the validity of the findings. It will also offer a platform to discuss initial policy recommendations, encouraging private sector participants to comment and share their views regarding future priorities for SME development in the country.
EU4Business: From Policies to Action is a regional project implemented by the OECD, which supports competitiveness and business environment reforms in the Eastern Partnership countries, working both at country and regional level.