The SME Circle, the European People Party’s initiative to support small and medium sized companies, has called for a strong share of the new EU Budget to be invested in promoting SMEs in Europe. The SME Circle points out that 99% of businesses in Europe are SMEs, amounting to over 20 million companies, and that these vital businesses need support now more than ever.
Healthy indigenous industries form the backbone of the European economy. With deep roots in their communities, these businesses create much-needed jobs in rural areas across Europe and sustain a strong civic life in many communities. By sustaining the economic life of Europe, SMEs bring prosperity to all citizens in the EU. ESTA members are all European companies, many of which are family-owned, and are proud to contribute to this vital part of the European economy.
ESTA Secretary General Peter van der Mark said: “Many of our member companies have been producing in the same place for over 100 years, and are pillars in their local communities. It is important to protect those sectors of the European economy which keep alive traditional forms of production and take an artisan approach to their manufacturing. While more support for SMEs is vital, so too is ensuring that SMEs are supported in all areas of EU policy. Too often support in one area is undermined by regulations which penalise small companies. This is true of the tobacco sector, where onerous regulation cripples smaller producers. EU lawmakers must start standing up for all indigenous EU industries.”