For Oral Answer on : 13/12/2022
Question Number(s): 100 Question Reference(s): 62049/22
Department: Enterprise, Trade and Employment
Asked by: David Stanton T.D.
* To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise; Trade and Employment the ways in which his Department is supporting small and medium sized enterprises and indigenous businesses to grow and expand; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
– David Stanton T.D.
For ORAL answer on Tuesday, 13 December, 2022.
As part of the Programme for Government a commitment was made to deliver a National SME Growth Plan to map out an ambitious strategic blueprint for SME’s and entrepreneurs. The SME and Entrepreneurship Taskforce was appointed to produce a report with a broad range of measures to help SMEs to start up, scale up and access foreign markets, as well as recommendations to help SMEs become more productive and ready for a digital, green economy. The Taskforce, chaired by myself and my colleague, Minister Calleary, is currently overseeing the implementation of 10 agreed priorities.
These priority areas are access to finance; digital transformation; increasing first time exporters; enhanced assistance for high-potential businesses; clustering and networks; SME management skills; reducing the regulatory burden on SMEs; delivery of a single portal for business information and assistance; ensuring comprehensive enterprise agency coverage for SMEs; and increased SME participation in public procurement.
The Department supports SMEs, particularly through the enterprise agencies, by providing access to advice, training and direct financial grants. My Department works to ensure an adequate supply of credit to SMEs through State-backed loan schemes and equity investment schemes. We have introduced the Digital Transition Fund to support companies at all stages of their digital journey. The Green Transition Fund builds capacity in manufacturing businesses to develop decarbonisation plans and funds investments in carbon neutral technologies and energy monitoring systems.
Information on all these programmes is available through the supportingSMEs.ie website, which includes quick links to areas of interest such as Scaling, Access to Finance, Exporting, Climate, Skills and Digitalisation as well as a filtering tool to direct users to specific programmes.
The new White Paper on Enterprise sets out an ambitious vision for enterprise policy, to protect our strong economic position, and respond to challenges and opportunities that have emerged as a result of the pandemic, wider economic and geo-political developments, digitalisation and an increased urgency to decarbonise industry.