Focus on SME training: second edition of East Invest newsletter now available
Tuesday, November 29The second edition of the East Invest newsletter has been released this month to showcase the main activities organised within the framework of the East Invest project. Highlights of this second edition include training seminars for SMEs which were held in 6 Eastern Partnership countries on EU acquis and internationalisation, BSO (Business Support Exchanges) exchanges between the EU and the EaP countries, and the upcoming kick-off meeting for the BSO twinning projects in January 2012.
The three-page publication says that 24 training seminars for SMEs were organised in 6 Eastern Partnership countries between mid October and late November. Focusing on EU acquis and internationalisation, the seminars were conducted by EaP experts at the ‘starter’ level for companies with little or no international market experience, and by EU experts at the ‘advanced’ level for companies which have already gained such experience and currently intend to extend the scope of their activity abroad.
Over 450 SMEs have registered for the seminars so far through the East Invest web site, and the recruitment of companies has been most successful in Georgia, with 44 companies accepted into the training programme. Among the main challenges facing SMEs are language and communication issues, such as lack of knowledge of the English language, and the unavailability of internet for smaller businesses located in remote areas.
The newsletter also focuses on the BSO Exchange Facility, a benchmarking tool which allows business organizations from the Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries to enhance their capacities and learn from their European colleagues through a short term traineeship. For its first evaluation round in mid September, EUROCHAMBRES has approved 4 exchange applications and traineeships will be offered to Managers from EaP Business Support Organizations in Belgium, Poland and the UK starting January 2012.
The newsletter also highlights the upcoming BSO Twinning projects, which aim to enhance the capacities of BSOs from the EaP countries by encouraging the transfer of know-how and the creation of sustainable cooperation links between BSOs from the EU and the EaP. Each twinning project lasts for a maximum of 12 months and involves 2-4 EU partners and 1 EaP partner. So far, 15 twinning proposals have been submitted to EUROCHAMBRES and the results of the evaluation process were communicated to the partners in the first half of November. (25-11-2011, ENPI Info Centre)