EC to launch Chinese gateway centre for SMEs

8 Nov 2010

A centre that focuses on providing advice and training for European SMEs hoping to export or invest in the Chinese market has been launched by the European Commission (EC).

The Centre for European Union Small and Medium Enterprises (EU SME Centre) was launched by Antonia Tajani, vice-president of the EC responsible for industry and entrepreneurship, was launched in Beijing recently.

The centre is designed to facilitate information, advice, training and matchmaking for SMEs that wish to do business in the Chinese marketplace, and will contribute to strengthening trade relations between the EU and China, whilst intensifying co-operation and foreign direct investment.

Think small first

Speaking at the launch, Tajani said: “The launch of the EU SME Centre in Beijing is an important step in the implementation of the Small Business Act, the EU’s main initiative in support of SMEs, and in the realisation of the ‘think small first’ principle that embodies European SME policy.

“Growth beyond domestic markets and the internationalisation of SMEs is crucial for European competitiveness, and the Commission has a significant role to play as a facilitator of this process.”

Up to 25pc of European small and medium-sized businesses export or have exported their goods or services over the past three years and with the launch of the centre, this is expected to increase.

The Commission plans to publish a strategy for the internationalisation of European SMEs in 2011.