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OECD SME and Entrepreneurship Outlook 2005

image of OECD SME and Entrepreneurship Outlook 2005

Encouraging entrepreneurship and facilitating the rapid growth of innovative SMEs is an effective means of creating jobs, increasing productivity and alleviating poverty. This publication describes recent trends concerning SMEs and entrepreneurship in OECD economies and beyond. It reports on a range of policy initiatives taken to enhance the vitality and competitiveness of the SME sector—which comprises over 95% of all enterprises and accounts for two thirds of private sector employment. Among the themes covered in this edition are regulatory and administrative burdens; entrepreneurship education and training; SME access to financing, technology, innovation and international markets; women’s entrepreneurship; and local policy issues. This third edition also includes the Istanbul Ministerial Declaration on Fostering the Growth of Innovative and Internationally Competitive SMEs.  

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Policy Issues and Recent Policy Developments Concerning SMEs and Entrepreneurship

A range of new policy initiatives have been implemented in recent years to enhance SME dynamism and competitiveness. Prominent among these were measures to ease product market regulations and administrative barriers to entrepreneurship. ICTs, Web portals and online one-stop-shops are facilitating administrative simplification. Increasing attention is given to education and training for entrepreneurship, and a number of major initiatives in favour of women’s entrepreneurship have been taken. High priority is attached to easing SME access to financing, and to strengthening the knowledge and innovation base of SMEs. SMEs are increasingly encouraged to internationalise their operations. The importance of entrepreneurship and innovation for SMEs for fostering growth in a globalised, knowledge-based economy was highlighted by the 2nd OECD Ministerial Conference on SMEs in Istanbul in June 2004 and in its outcome the Istanbul Ministerial Declaration on Fostering the Growth of Innovative and Internationally Competitive SMEs.

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