MEP Iuliu Winkler calls for SME development within new EU industrial policy

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The development of the small- and medium-sized enterprise (SME) sector should benefit from greater attention within the new industrial policy of the European Union, Romanian MEP Iuliu Winkler said in a memo put forward to the European Parliament.
 
The European legislative body at a sitting in Strasbourg debated the European Commission’s Briefing on the EU Industrial Policy, the MEP’s press office said in a release on May 22.
 
"The most significant development of the EU industrial policy is the movement towards sustainable industrial policy. Chiefly, this thing means the EU should keep its leading role as regards energy efficiency in industry and with respect to curbing the carbon dioxide emissions resulted from the industrial processes", Winkler stressed.
 
He said the industrial sector keeps on being one of the engines of the European economy, accounting for about a fifth of the EU gross domestic product.
 
"The industrial sector makes a decisive contribution to the promotion of innovation, by contributing 81% of the spending incurred by research and development", Winkler said.
 
The Romanian MEP underscored the EU is facing a genuine challenge resulting from the need to efficiently combat unfair competition and to avoid protectionist temptations, if it wants to keep its position of the most important global player and a leader of technology export.
 
An essential part of the EU development policies is represented by the SME sector, which should be backed by measures meant to curb the administrative burden and to ease access to global markets, Winkler argued.
 
"The European institutions should pay special attention to backing the SME sector in the economies of the new member states with a view to narrowing the gap between them and the EU SMEs. The EU should take into account the potential of the industries in the new member states", Winkler said, adding that a legal framework targeting the small firms should be adopted as soon as possible.
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