By Rasana Gasimova
Azerbaijan’s Agency for the Development of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) continues to stimulate activities of micro-, small- and medium-sized businesses in the country. As part of support to the entrepreneurs’ activities, the Agency for Development of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) continues to enhance the role and competitiveness of SMEs in the country's economy.
Next “Friend of SMEs” center under the Agency for the Development of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) will open in later this year, the Agency Chairman Orkhan Mammadov told Trend.
He added that the center will open in Mingachevir.
“We are planning to open SMEs Development Agency offices in all of the regions in the future. At the moment, the Agency is working on the “Houses of SMEs” project that will be implemented in the format of “single window” to support small and medium business entities. I assume that “Friend of SMEs” centers will play a significant role in the development of small and medium businesses in Azerbaijan,” said Mammadov.
He went on to say that macro, small and medium businesses will receive financial support under the decree of the President in order to research domestic market.
“The government spends 80 percent of its expenditures on domestic market researches conducted on the basis of appeals from micro-enterprises, and 50 percent - from small businesses. The total amount of money spent on each research is 20,000 manats,” said Mammadov.
President Ilham Aliyev signed a decree on further improving the management of small and medium-sized businesses in December 2017. According to this decree, the Agency for Development of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises public legal entity was created.
Friend of SMEs centers will provide a range of services, including conducting training and rendering consulting, informational, and financial and other services.
The main task of the SMEs Development Agency is ensuring the succession of reforms, improvement of the business regulation system, and application of effective coordination, enhancing the role and competitiveness of SMEs in the country's economy, as well as the compliance of the management system in this area with modern requirements.
The SMEs held a share of 76 percent in employment in the country last year, and in recent years, comprehensive work has been carried out for the development of SMEs. In particular, inspections of business entities have been suspended and the process of obtaining licenses has been simplified.
The share of SMEs in Azerbaijan’s foreign trade is planned to increase to 40 percent after 2025.
The stand of the Agency won a “Best social project” award at the 2nd Azerbaijan International Exhibition of Gifts and Promo Items (Gift & Promo 2019) held in Baku on September 12-14.
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