COSME, the programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), funds many initiatives that help small businesses access new markets.
The Commission has a legal obligation to monitor the implementation of the COSME programme, to report annually and to disseminate the results of this monitoring.
The promotion of entrepreneurship and an entrepreneurial culture is therefore one of the main objectives of COSME.
COSME aims to create more favourable conditions for the creation of businesses and growth through several means, as described below.
Download the leaflet with the key information on the COSME programme and its objectives.
COSME aims to make it easier for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to access finance in all phases of their lifecycle – creation, expansion, or business transfer. Thanks to EU support, businesses have easier access to guarantees, loans and equity capital. EU ‘financial instruments’ are channelled through local financial institutions in EU countries. To find a financial institution in your country, visit the Access to Finance portal.
COSME helps businesses to access markets in the EU and beyond. It funds the Enterprise Europe Network that helps SMEs find business and technology partners, and understand EU legislation; the Your Europe Business portal that provides practical information on doing business within Europe. It also finances a number of IPR (intellectual property rights) SME Helpdesks.
COSME supports entrepreneurs by strengthening entrepreneurship education, mentoring, guidance and other support services. Actions support specific groups who may find it difficult to reach their full potential, such as young people, women and senior entrepreneurs. The programme also aims to help businesses access opportunities offered by digital technologies.
Improving business conditions
COSME aims to reduce the administrative and regulatory burden on SMEs by creating a business-friendly environment. COSME also supports businesses to be competitive by encouraging them to adopt new business models and innovative practices. This complements actions in areas with high growth potential such as the tourism sector.
COSME is the EU programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises running from 2014 - 2020 with a budget of €2.3 billion.
SMEs are the backbone of Europe’s economy, providing 85% of all new jobs. The European Commission aims to promote entrepreneurship and improve the business environment for SMEs to allow them to realise their full potential in today’s global economy.
Expressions of interest
The Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME) manages COSME on behalf of the European Commission. Expressions of interest related to COSME can be found on the EASME website. Applications to open calls are made through the Participant Portal.
Financial intermediaries can find more information on the calls for expression of interest on the COSME financial instruments page.