Review of Ireland's SME & Entrepreneurship Policy Progressing

The Minister of State for Trade, Employment, Business, EU Digital Single Market and Data Protection, Minister Pat Breen TD, has visited Paris to discuss the OECD Review of SME and Entrepreneurship Policy in Ireland.

The landmark project, carried out over an 18-month period, aims to provide tailored analysis and recommendations to the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation on how to improve the design and implementation of national SME and entrepreneurship policies and programmes, based on an assessment of the country's current performance, framework conditions, and international comparisons.

Minister Breen has met with the OECD Working Party on SME and Entrepreneurship for an exchange of views on the progress of the Review. The Minister will address the Working Party, and the meeting will also hear from the four OECD countries who are participating in the peer review of the project – Sweden, Italy, New Zealand, and Canada.

The collaborative exercise has involved considerable input from a wide range of stakeholders, including SME representatives in Ireland. The Review is expected to be finalised later this year and will inform the development by the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation of an Irish SME and Entrepreneurship Strategy, which will be part of the Future Jobs Framework.

The key objectives of the Review are to provide an assessment of current SME and entrepreneurship policies and programmes in Ireland, to strengthen policy design and implementation, including through a policy roadmap, and to provide an international comparison of successful SME and entrepreneurship policies.

Speaking in Paris, Minister Breen said: "I welcome the opportunity to meet with the OECD today, to take forward this landmark Review of SME and Entrepreneurship Policy in Ireland. SMEs are the backbone of our business community, with a presence in every region and every town across the country, and are vital both for our enterprise culture, and also for the vibrancy of local communities. The OECD Review gives us a very valuable opportunity to have an expert evaluation of our current SME environment, and to learn from international best practice, especially from our fellow OECD countries, from different parts of the world. The recommendations from the Review will be highly valuable to us in developing our own Irish SME and Entrepreneurship Strategy, beginning later this year."

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