SMEs need support at all levels, says EC

The European Commission (EC) vice president Antonio Tajani has called for further support to small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), in a bid to boost the eurozone economy.

Statistics produced by the EC showed that SMEs created 85% of net new jobs in the European Union between 2002 and 2010. These figures are set to be published as part of a new EC study looking at the essential contribution of SMEs on job creation. According to the report, 67% of SMEs were in total employment with the results showing a one per cent annual employment growth among those businesses in the sector.

This 1% gain was around double the growth seen among large enterprises, where employment growth stood at 0.5% a year. Within the SME size-class micro firms of less than ten employees were responsible for 58% of the total net employment growth in the sector.

Speaking about the results, Mr Tajani said: "In this critical time for European economy, we see small enterprises delivering and confirming their role as main generators of new jobs. "Their significant share in job creation highlights the greater than ever economic relevance of SMEs and the need to support them at all levels."