Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs

SME support

SME support

The European Commission runs a number of campaigns and projects aimed at promoting a business-friendly environment, sharing best practices and exchanging ideas among entrepreneurs.

What the Commission does

The European SME Week

The European SME Week is a pan-European campaign that aims to promote entrepreneurship in Europe. It helps existing entrepreneurs find information on available support and tries to encourage more people to set up their own businesses. Coordinated by the Commission, this campaign consists of events throughout the whole year. Learn more about the SME Week.

The European Enterprise Promotion Awards

The European Enterprise Promotion Awards aim to promote entrepreneurship, reward successful organisations supporting SMEs, and inspire others to set up their own businesses. National, regional, and local initiatives from all EU countries, as well as Iceland, Serbia and Turkey can take part in the competition. Learn more about the European Enterprise Promotion Awards.

Late Payment Directive

In order to protect European businesses, in particular SMEs, against late payment and to improve their competitiveness, Directive 2011/7/EU on combating late payment in commercial transactions was adopted on 16 February 2011 and should have been integrated into national law by EU countries by 16 March 2013 at the latest. This Directive puts in place stricter measures than its precedent, harmonising payment periods for payment by public authorities to businesses for the first time. Learn more about fighting late payments.

Project on enforcement of outstanding claims

Small companies doing business in an EU country outside of their own often face debt recovery problems with clients located in other EU countries. The main aim of this project was to raise awareness of claims management instruments and improve their use through a series of events organised in all EU countries. Learn more about the project on enforcement of outstanding claims.

Support to SMEs and entrepreneurs

To provide support and information to small and medium-sized businesses (SMES) seeking to boost their business, the Commission sponsors several portals and networks. Learn more about the support to SMEs.