Eurochambres survey highlights green transition challenges for SMEs

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Eurochambres – the Association of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry – has carried out a survey to investigate the hurdles that companies face in speeding up the green transition and dealing with related skills shortages. The survey also highlights the importance of investing in green skills. Eurochambres represents more than 20 million European businesses – 98% of them SMEs – through its 45 members and a Europe-wide network of 1 700 regional and local chambers of commerce.

Notwithstanding certain hurdles, businesses feel good about the green transition: 69% of respondents say that it has a positive impact on the labour market in their country; just 4% view its impact negatively.

Funding and advice

Eurochambers have promoted various initiatives to prepare companies for the green transition. Foremost amongst these are exchanges of best practices, collaboration with local and regional economic stakeholders, and training and advisory programmes.

For SMEs, advisory programmes are seen as particularly important. The infographic on the survey shows that, together with increased funding opportunities, such programmes are widely viewed as the most effective way of accelerating the green transition in SMEs. For businesses in general, bringing school curricula into line with labour market priorities is considered an important element in the process.

Good practices and recommendations

Details were given of good practices from around Europe, including activities implemented by the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry, which has become a member of the Circular Economy Alliance, in order to train SMEs and their employees in circular economy matters.

Finally, the survey made a series of recommendations. Along with provision of advisory programmes on energy efficiency and circularity and increased public funding, proposals of specific relevance to SMEs are wider dissemination of information on the availability of support in overcoming challenges, and a new approach to offering assistance that involves employment services, educational institutions and public authorities. Other recommendations concern adaptions to curricula at school and adult education levels.

To read the survey and take a look at the infographic, click here.

This article is published in the name and with approval of Eurochambres. For more information on SMEs, visit the European Commission website and get the latest updates on the Promoting Enterprise News Portal. And be sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and subscribe to our newsletter.