To return to growth and higher levels of employment, Europe needs more entrepreneurs. New companies, including small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), create more than 4 million new jobs every year – the biggest source of new jobs in Europe. Recognising the integral role entrepreneurs play in economic recovery, the European Commission has launched the Entrepreneurship 2020 Action Plan. A combination of investments, regulatory advances and educational opportunities, the Action Plan will help return economic growth to Europe.
As a way to support entrepreneurs and revolutionise entrepreneurial culture in Europe, European Commission Vice-President Antonio Tajani presented the Entrepreneurship 2020 Action Plan in January 2013. The plan stresses the key role of education and training to nurture new generations of entrepreneurs, and includes specific measures to help budding entrepreneurs among young people, women, seniors, migrants and the unemployed.
The plan also tackles obstacles to entrepreneurship by establishing ambitious measures to facilitate start-ups and new businesses; make transfers of business ownership more successful; improve access to finance; and give honest entrepreneurs a second chance after bankruptcy.
‘To make it very clear: more entrepreneurs mean more jobs, more innovation and more competitiveness,’ Tajani said. ‘Becoming an entrepreneur and making a vision come true takes a lot of personal risk and effort. Entrepreneurs are the heroes of our time. Entrepreneurship is the most powerful driver of economic growth in history. Therefore, we want to make entrepreneurship an attractive and accessible prospect for European citizens. If we can unleash Europe's entrepreneurial potential, we can bring back growth to Europe.’
The Entrepreneurship Action Plan covers a number of key areas where action is needed to create an environment in which entrepreneurs can flourish and grow, such as:
The Commission also intends to promote entrepreneurship in specific segments of the population:
The Commission is working closely with Member States, business organisations and relevant stakeholders to implement the Entrepreneurship 2020 Action Plan to help lead Europe out of the crisis.
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