A key objective for me as Minister for Business, Enterprise and Innovation and for this Government as part of our Future Jobs Ireland Initiative is to nurture entrepreneurship and support our businesses and workers to prepare now for tomorrow’s world. Our small and medium enterprises are the largest employers in the economy, with 70 per cent of our workers are employed by an SME, which highlights the crucial importance of Ireland’s indigenous businesses to stability and growth in every region. That is why I commissioned the OECD to undertake this detailed review into Ireland’s SME and entrepreneurship policies in March 2018.
My Department will draft a single national strategic document for SME and entrepreneurship policy outlining all planned policy interventions in this field in the medium term. It will include information drawn from the range of existing national policy statements referencing SMEs and entrepreneurship as well as other Department and Agency plans.
The strategy will set out the policy vision, objectives, targets, lines of action and performance indicators specific to SMEs and entrepreneurship. It will cover all areas of policy intervention and all SME and entrepreneurship populations.
The OECD’s recommendations will be considered in the formulation of a new government strategy on SMEs and Entrepreneurship. I have established a new SME and Entrepreneurship Consultation Group of key stakeholders, with my colleague Minister Breen as chair, to consider the review and areas for action, this consultation is ongoing, and I will announce an ambitious new national SME and Entrepreneurship strategy in due course.