EU to provide EUR 55 mln of donor aid to Ukraine to support SME
The European Union would provide EUR 55 million of donor aid to support small and medium enterprises (SME).
The Economic Development and Trade Ministry of Ukraine said on its website that the agreement was signed by Economic Development and Trade Minister of Ukraine Aivaras Abromavicius and Director of IPA Strategy of Directorate General for Enlargement of the European Commission Gerhard Schumann-Hitzler.
The EU is to provide the funds under the programme EU Support to Ukraine to Re-launch the Economy (EU SURE). The funds will be used in 15 regions of Ukraine to create Business Support Centers, where SME will get consultations on the legal and market issues of doing business in Ukraine and abroad.
First, the centers would help starting business in agricultural, energy efficiency, ecology projects, the improvement of the quality of public services, infrastructure, and innovation technologies.
Deputy Economic Development and Trade Minister Yulia Klymenko said that one of the tasks of the Business Support Centers is to make the way of businessmen to Europe easier.
"If SME want to produce, trade and buy in the EU with profits, they are to use the advantages of DCFTA – the free trade zone between Ukraine and the EU. Center consultants would help them to do this," she said.
The ministry said that the similar initiative that includes aid to Ukraine in developing SME are plans to the EU to provide EUR 40 million to finance the loan guarantee fund. Banks would receive an additional incentive to credit SMEs. The authors of the programme expect that with the effect of the financial tool of 7-8% SME would be able to receive loans of EUR 300 million. The EU aid would be sent to facilitate Ukraine's participation in EU programmes Horizon 2020 and COSME (the EU programme for the Competitiveness of SMEs).