• The Minister of Economy will present a report on "Size and Business Growth" to Parliament in late July with measures to promote the growth of SMEs
  • José Luis Bonet: "Size influences financing, investment, internationalization and the ability to train and attract talent"
  • Isabel García Tejerina: "Innovation, internationalization, business growth and environmental sustainability, challenges of the agri-food sector"

The Prime Minister, Mariano Rajoy, announced today that the Executive is working on a Business Growth Strategy to improve the competitiveness of the Spanish economy. Mariano Rajoy has made this announcement during the conference "Business Growth and Competitiveness", which has been jointly organized by the Spanish Chamber and the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness. At the end of July, the Minister of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness, Luis de Guindos, will present a report on "Business Size and Growth" in Parliament, which will include a diagnosis on the business dimension and will include a series of measures to promote growth SMEs.

According to the President of the Government, increasing the size of Spanish companies would improve productivity and the potential growth of the economy and, therefore, he stressed that the factors that determine growth will be analyzed. Among them he has mentioned the regulatory thresholds – rules that are activated when the company exceeds a certain size – and that can slow down its expansion. "We have detected 130 regulations related to size," he explained. He also referred to the need to create an "environment conducive to entrepreneurship and a business climate."

He has also referred to the proliferation of sectoral and territorial regulations and financing difficulties and for the internationalization of SMEs.

For her part, the Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Food and Environment, Isabel García Tejerina, who closed the event, pointed out that the priorities of the agri-food sector are innovation, internationalization, business growth and environmental sustainability. Also in this sector, which constitutes the first industrial branch of Spain, the small business size is a determining factor for the sector's competitiveness. To resolve this, his department has created a working group together with the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness to promote the competitiveness of the agri-food industry. It has also announced the forthcoming signing of an agreement with the Spanish Chamber of Commerce to support food companies.

The president of the Spanish Chamber of Commerce, José Luis Bonet, stressed during his speech that size influences the ability of companies to get financing, to invest in innovation, branding and digitization, to internationalize, in order to train their employees and to attract and retain talent.

"Having larger companies is essential to have a strong and consolidated fabric that creates jobs and wealth in a sustained way," said José Luis Bonet, "because larger companies are more stable, more resistant to economic cycles and they create more and better jobs ”.

For all these reasons, as explained by the head of the Spanish Chamber, increasing the size of companies must be one of the priorities of Spain and requires the collaboration of all economic and social agents, the public and private sector and the tractor effect of large companies on SMEs. In fact, the Spanish Chamber of Commerce and the Ministry of Economy are working together to analyze the main obstacles to the increase in the size of SMEs.

Business growth and competitiveness

The conference was held around two round tables, in which the main barriers that hinder business growth were analyzed.

The first table was moderated by the Director General of Economic Policy of the Ministry of Economy, Rodrigo Madrazo, with the participation of Nina Budina (IMF), Mierta Capaul (World Bank), Álvaro Pereira (OECD), Aitor Lacuesta (Bank of Spain ) and Luis Garicano (London School of Economics).

The main conclusion of the speakers is that the biggest obstacles to business growth are lack of financing, excessive regulation, fragmentation of the market, human capital formation and fiscal and labor thresholds. In his opinion, SMEs should improve their productivity as a necessary condition to gain size.

The second round table has analyzed the problem of dimension from a business perspective. Olga Abad, president of the Pymes Commission of the Spanish Chamber, has been in charge of moderating the table in which Javier Roquero (Salto Systems), Francisco Riberas (Gestamp), Jesús Sainz (Círculo de Empresarios), Ignacio Osborne (IEF) and José Luis Feito (IEE).

The quality of human capital training has been the main problem identified by the participants at this table when it comes to gaining dimension. The development in Spain of Dual Vocational Training and the adaptation between supply and demand so that companies can cover the profiles they currently need have been the main proposals for Spanish SMEs to gain in size and contribute to improving competitiveness. and productivity.

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