This high-level event organised by the IEA and the European Commission will raise awareness of the need to support small businesses in becoming more energy efficient and resilient to weather the current energy crisis – and the government support currently available to such businesses in the EU.
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) employ more than 80 million people, account for more than half of Europe’s GDP and play a key role in every sector of the economy.
Small businesses are now faced with today’s high energy prices and supply uncertainties, with many having never fully recovered from the impact of Covid-19 lockdowns. SMEs are particularly vulnerable, as they lack the scale of larger companies to absorb the impact. Given their key role in the economy, small businesses need to be empowered and supported throughout this crisis.
One of the most effective ways to support SMEs in mitigating energy costs and supply risks is to help them reduce energy consumption, both in the short and longer term.
That is why the European Commission and the International Energy Agency – working together with other stakeholders such as national, regional and local governments, financial institutions and energy agencies – are highlighting how we can support SMEs in these difficult times. Only by joining forces can we ensure that small businesses become more resilient in the face of the current unprecedented energy crisis.
- Leonore Gewessler, Federal Minister for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology, Austria
- Claude Turmes, Minister of Spatial Planning and Energy, Luxembourg
- Véronique Willems, Secretary General SMEunited
- Plamen Dimitrov, President, Bulgarian Confederation of Independent Trade Unions (CITUB)
- Seamus Hoyne, Secretary General, FEDARENE