Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of the EU’s economy, providing a significant source of jobs and economic growth. The European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) provides support for SMEs worth a total of €54.6 billion for the current (2014-2020) period, including €25.6 billion dedicated to the specific objective of “enhancing the competitiveness of SMEs”. Support for SMEs will remain a key pillar of EU cohesion policy under the EU’s next long-term budget for the 2021-2027 period.
We are conducting an audit on whether ERDF support for SMEs has focused on results and helped to make SMEs more competitive and fit for future. In particular, we will examine whether this support is designed in a way that delivers lasting competitive gains for SMEs, whether it targets relevant beneficiaries and addresses the most relevant needs, and whether projects implemented using ERDF support have been effective.
If you wish to contact the audit team, you may do so at the following email address: ECA-ERDF-SMEsfirstname.lastname@example.org.