INSMEAcademy: The Effects of the COVID-19 Crisis on SMEs

21 Sept 2023

The INSMEAcademy hosted its latest webinar on “ Crisis Costs for European SMEs: the EESC Study on September 20th 

Speakers Francesco Camonita (Researcher and Project Manager at Wise Angle Consulting) an Carina Dantas (CEO of SHINE 2Europe),  discussed the insights from the study: “Crisis Costs for Europeans SMEs” carried out  on behalf of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), developed by Wise Angle and SHINE 2Europe with INSME’s support.  

The COVID-19 pandemic has become the landmark for one of the greatest economic shocks ever experienced. As such, many SMEs were exposed to financial and employment-related losses, especially in the retail and tourism sector. In the light of this, the EESC study analysed six SMEs challenges that will be presented and thoroughly discussed: containment measures, the workforce challenge, financial consequences, digitalisation, public assistance and European diversity. The authors highlighted how economic crises are shifting from a traditional financial or industry-sector focus to new forms productivity disruptions (spreading across multiple sectors and it is increasingly difficult to isolate one and intervene on a well-defined industry segment). 

This EESC study has a high potential to assist future policymaking: It seeks out new ways to identify “winning” and “losing” adaptation factors of SMEs in a variety of sectors and in the face of prolonged productivity crises. It has proven highly difficult to pinpoint all “winning” and “losing” SME companies from a specific industry, rather, the study focuses on “winning” and “losing” adaptation factors of SMEs which could be insightful in assessing SME performances for further equity/support measures. 

The research then suggests specific policy measures to pursue in the short and in the long term: a) simplification of procedures and light administrative costs; b) to sustain energy, fuel and raw materials increasing prices with direct support; c) restructure the supply chain and identify new markets d) the involvement of SMEs in public procurement; e) better involvement of SMEs network in the decision making; f) development of training skills for workers through job seminars. Participants were able to learn about these measures and discuss them with the speakers. 

Read more about it and have a look at the key takeaways here!

Source: INSME Secretariat

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