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SME Policy Index: Western Balkans and Turkey 2016

Assessing the Implementation of the Small Business Act for Europe

image of SME Policy Index: Western Balkans and Turkey 2016

The SME Policy Index is a benchmarking tool designed for emerging economies to assess SME policy frameworks and monitor progress in policy implementation over time. The Index has been developed by the OECD in partnership with the European Commission (EC), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), and the European Training Foundation (ETF) in 2006 for the Western Balkans. The South East European Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning (SEECEL) joined as an additional partner in 2014. The SME Policy Index has since 2006 been applied in four regions and nine assessment rounds overall.

The SME Policy Index: Western Balkans and Turkey 2016 presents the results of the fourth assessment of the Small Business Act for Europe in the Western Balkans and, since 2012, Turkey. The assessment framework is structured around the ten principles of the Small Business Act for Europe (SBA). It provides a wide-range of pro-enterprise measures to guide the design and implementation of SME policies based on good practices promoted by the EU and the OECD.

The Index identifies strengths and weaknesses in policy design, implementation and monitoring. It allows for comparison across countries and measures convergence towards good practices and relevant policy standards. It aims to support governments in setting targets for SME policy development and to identify strategic priorities to further improve the business environment. It also helps to engage governments in policy dialogue and exchange good practices within the region and with OECD and EU members.

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Kosovo

Small Business Act country profile

Kosovo has made significant progress since the 2012 assessment, in particular in improving its institutional environment for SME development through launching its new Private Sector Development Strategy 2013-2017. It has improved the business environment through simplifying company registration procedures and by introducing one-stop shops across Kosovo. Access to finance has been improved through a strengthened legal and regulatory framework but lending remains constrained by a challenging economic environment with high levels of informality. The implementation of the entrepreneurship and skills agenda has mainly involved higher education. Kosovo now needs to finally adopt its innovation strategy and help SMEs make better use of technology, research and innovation. The government should further expand e-services and raise awareness of them among the business community. The market for non-banking finance should be deepened and broadened. Export finance tools should be developed to help export-oriented SMEs expand into foreign markets. Finally, mechanisms to stabilise lifelong learning partnerships among public, private and civil society should be put in place.

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