Ahead of the extraordinary European Council on the next Multiannual Financial Framework, SMEunited President Alban Maggiar has “reminded” European leaders on the priorities ahead.
Maggiar says Europe will only be able to provide welfare to its people, if it invests in future competitiveness, based on a greener and digital economy.
Therefore, Maggiar urges the European Council to agree on a budget framework able to deliver on these priorities.
“There is no doubt that finding a balanced compromise on a future Multiannual Financial Framework for the European Union will be difficult”, states Maggiar.
However, “European SMEs expect that the Member States agree on a budget framework, which replies to the real challenges ahead”, reminds Maggiar. Even if the new figures on the table make some steps back compared to the original proposal from the European Commission, SMEs still welcome its general orientation.
The most important elements for SMEs to ensure a future proofed European budget are: (1) a strong focus on SMEs, innovation, digitalisation and greening in the decentralised managed programmes, (2) InvestEU to ensure access to finance, (3) a DigitalEurope Programme, which reaches out to real SMEs and (4) support for highly innovative SMEs via the European Innovation Council of Horizon Europe.
“It goes without saying that SMEs would appreciate if European Institutions would have more resources to push for the needed reforms,” regrets Maggiar, however he acknowledges for “Member States having to respond to their tax payers concerns.”
Having to deal with limited resources, “it is even more important to focus on investments in future growth, jobs and welfare instead of paying to protect uncompetitive structures”, underlines Maggiar. Therefore, SMEunited welcomes the prioritisation of greening and digitalisation of Europe’s economy to make it more innovative.