The participation of SMEs in public procurement is a win-win situation. It helps SMEs to grow and scale-up, it improves their reputation, and helps them to obtain more business in the private sector. For public authorities, it increases the number of offers the public buyers get, ultimately increasing the chances to obtain the best value for money.
This action will be implemented through a call for proposals. The projects shall take into consideration several aspects: the identification of the SMEs capacities to operate in an international environment, the sector specificities, and the knowledge and expertise related to certain non-Union partner countries, the knowledge about procurement markets.
Therefore, this action will give flexibility to the organisations submitting the proposal to tailor their services to the needs of SMEs while achieving the objectives set in this action. The action could cover several measures such as awareness-raising about opportunities existing outside the Union (tenders alerts and guides on what is specific to the respective country on public procurement), training and advisory services to SMEs, business- to-procurers events, partner-finding support, consortia building, etc. In the implementation of this action, the selected consortia should look for synergies with other projects/initiatives developed under COSME or other Union Programmes.
The objective pursued is to improve SMEs’ access to public procurement in the non-Union countries with which the Union signed an agreement covering public procurement (for example, the Government Procurement Agreement of the World Trade Organisation, Stabilisation and Association Agreements, Free Trade Agreements, etc.).
Public procurement contributes to the growth and the global competitiveness of SMEs. The European Union has invested significant resources in negotiating these agreements in order for Union companies to be able to take advantage of the opportunities outside the Union. This action will focus particularly on the public procurement area and falls under the second specific objective of the COSME programme: access to markets.
The current action is designed to ultimately help SMEs to participate in public procurement outside the Union through co-financing actions of intermediate organisations supporting SMEs’ internationalisation and participation in public procurement. As a result, these organisations should develop their capacities to help SMEs in this respect, offer more targeted and better support. This measure should complement the efforts done by the EEN in this field and serve as a basis for a better understanding of the SMEs’ concrete needs and developing more precise tools.
15 September 2020 17:00:00 Brussels time