14:16 22.02.2017

Rada ratifies agreement with EU on Ukraine's participation in COSME programme

The Verkhovna Rada has ratified an agreement signed by the Ukrainian government and the European Union on Ukraine's participation in the COSME EU program for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) for r2014-2020.

A total of 226 lawmakers supported bill No. 0130 on Wednesday.

According to an explanatory note to the document, its ratification would give legal grounds for joining the COSME program by Ukraine. The program aims at creating favorable conditions for development of SMEs.

The program is being implemented as part of the Europe 2020 strategy and it was approved by the European Parliament and of the Council on December 11, 2013. It runs from 2014 to 2020 with a planned budget of EUR 2.3 billion.

MP from Petro Poroshenko Bloc Oleksiy Poroshenko said during the discussion of the bill that this agreement is a unique chance of Ukrainian society to join the European SME program.

"The SME segment, not large industry, is the key in developed countries. SMEs provide for more than 50% of GDP and create up to 90% of jobs. The COSME program not only relaxes access of Ukrainian entrepreneurs to the European market, but it gives a chance to establish partnership relations with foreign colleagues. The total budget of the program is over EUR 2 billion, and Ukrainians could attract some of this money for creation and development of own business," he said.

He said that the COSME program seeks to spend around EUR 60 million on the formation of the modern culture of doing business in Ukraine.

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