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European Union - United States Joint Report: SME Best Practices Exchange, 28-29 June 2011 Published on: 22/07/2011

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The EU and the U.S. Joint Report on small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) best practices exchange, Brussels 28-29 June 2011.

A SME “Best Practices” conference on 28 and 29 June in Brussels brought together government officials and SME executives from both sides of the Atlantic.  The conference was hosted by the European Commission, with active participation by major SME business organisations.  It was opened by the SME Envoy Mr. Daniel Calleja Crespo from DG Enterprise and Mrs. Signe Ratso, Director in DG TRADE for Market Access and Industry, for the EU side and by Mr. Thomas White, Deputy Chief of US Mission to the EU, for the U.S. side.

After presentations of the EU and U.S. general SME policy frameworks, participants discussed a number of specific topics, including the reduction of trade barriers impacting SMEs, standardisation and regulation, reduction of administrative burdens, environmental challenges and green technologies, access to markets and market access cooperation in third countries, and the new transatlantic online portal on intellectual property.

The EU and the U.S. agreed to hold a follow-up seminar in Washington D.C., in the autumn, which will revisit certain issues raised at the Brussels event and also consider additional topics, such as regulatory cooperation, access to finance, entrepreneurship, second chance or serial entrepreneurship for entrepreneurs, export promotion and support for SME access to export markets.

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