Industrial Policy and SMEs

Aiming to restore growth in Europe, the EU is promoting a series of legislative proposals and initiatives, towards the enhancement of the Union’s competitiveness. To this end, the Cyprus Presidency will focus on measures aimed at strengthening the competitiveness of the Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) and their access to finance, strengthening the internal market, enhancing consumer protection and facilitating worker’s access to the labour market.

  • The Industrial policy is the mainstay of growth of the European economy. Business financing, especially for SMEs will be at the center of the Presidency’s efforts. The Review of the Communication on Integrated Industrial Policy for the Globalised Era and its enhancement with possible new actions, as well as the promotion of initiatives that foster entrepreneurship, are also of high importance for the Cyprus Presidency.

    Initiative for an Integrated Industrial Policy for the Globalised Era

    With this initiative, the EU proposes a new approach to industrial policy that will drive the European economy into dynamic growth, enhance the competitiveness and job availability within the EU and, at the same time, allow the transition to a low-carbon and resource efficient economy.

    It is an ambitious strategy for which the Cyprus Presidency intends to review the progress and to enrich the initiative with new actions.

    Technical Harmonization

    This area of legislative action refers to common rules for the design, naming and marketing of products or components, systems, services or methods. In particular, the aim of the rules is to improve the functioning of the internal market and the free movement of goods. A high degree of product safety is of great importance, as it is crucial that consumers in Europe can feel secure when purchasing goods in the Single Market. At the same time, different rules and standards across borders may cause distortion of competition in the market.

    During the Cyprus Presidency, important work will be done for the adoption of a number of directives to the New Legislative Framework for products such as electrical household devices, measuring and weighting instruments, lifts etc. The ‘New Legislation Framework’ is a horizontal new legislative framework, by which regulations set out for products must meet only essential requirements about health and safety.

    Additionally, the Cyprus Presidency will work to achieve further progress on the legislative proposal for the harmonized rules concerning the design of recreational crafts and the proposal for limiting noise emissions levels of new cars. The Cyprus Presidency will also continue the Council's efforts to create common rules on the approval of motorcycles and agricultural vehicles.

    Programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (COSME)

    COSME is the new Financial Instrument for the Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) and an important issues for the Cyprus Presidency under the new Multiannual Financial Framework (MFF), oriented into creating a more competitive and supportive environment for SMEs. The Presidency will seek to reach an agreement, always dependent on the negotiations in relation with the MFF.

    Fostering entrepreneurship as an engine for growth and competitiveness

    Stimulating entrepreneurship is one of the priorities of the Cyprus Presidency in relation with Industrial Policy. This will be the main issue of discussion of the Informal Competitiveness Ministerial Council to be held on 19-20 July 2012, in order to produce ideas for new European initiatives to give a new momentum for entrepreneurship, as one of the most crucial factors for job creation, competitiveness and economic growth. The Presidency will focus on the need to boost entrepreneurship as part of the European strategy for competitiveness and development.