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OECD SME Policy Index 2020

By Natalia Kochiashvili
Friday, March 20
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) published its report SME Policy Index – 2020, the ministry of economy and sustainable development informs. According to the information, Georgia has achieved unprecedented success in the ranking. Country's ratings and scores (compared to the previous 2016 ranking) improved in all 12 components, and in 9 of them, Georgia scored the highest among the Eastern Partnership countries.

OECD report shows that the small and medium enterprise (SME) development and strategic approach of targeted initiatives has made great progress and has achieved considerable success. In addition, according to the survey, the most impressive strides were taken in improving the operational environment of SMEs, the institutional framework for the development, training and entrepreneurial skills development, and improving areas of business support services.

The SME Policy Index 2020 rating is mainly based on the existence and effective implementation of a unified SME policy, strategy and action plan in countries. The purpose of this study is to assess the compliance of SME policy directions in countries with the components defined by the 10 principles of the European Small Business Act (SBA).

It is noteworthy that in 2018 the OECD monitored the implementation of Georgia's SME Development Strategy and prepared a relevant document. The aforementioned review was presented by the OECD at the 2018 Eurasian Week, with a positive assessment of the strategy's performance and Georgia being named as a model country among the Eastern Partnership countries.

In 2016, the Government of Georgia adopted the “SME Development Strategy for 2016-2020” and a relevant action plan developed by the economy ministry in close cooperation with the OECD and GIZ and with the support of the European Union.

According to Mikheil Khidureli, Director of the Agency of “Produce in Georgia” under the economy ministry, this agency and ministry have made a great contribution to achieved success.

“Our programs are focused on developing components such as SME entrepreneurship, internationalization of businesses and, most importantly, access to finance,” said Khidureli, emphasizing that Georgia is a leader in all these components, meaning that other countries are learning from Georgia's positive experience.

According to the industry component of Produce in Georgia agency, which mainly supports SMEs, 359 projects are supported in 2015 - 2020, with a total investment of GEL 783.2 million. In total, more than 13,000 jobs will be created. As for the Agency's Micro Entrepreneurship Support component, 6,212 projects are supported, with a co-financing of more than GEL46.9 million, and the total investment volume of funded projects is over GEL 61 million, with a total of 9,384 beneficiaries being funded.

The SME Policy Index is a benchmarking tool for assessing and monitoring progress in the design and implementation of policies for small and SMEs against EU and international good practice. This report marks the third edition in this series, following assessments in 2012 and 2016. The project is the result of a joint effort of the OECD, ETF, and EBRD, and was implemented with the financial support of the European Union under its EU4Business initiative.