Ukraine has officially joined the European program to strengthen the competitiveness and sustainability of small and medium businesses (COSME, 2014-2020) with a total budget of EUR2.3 billion, according to a posting on the website of the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade.
"Ukraine's participation in COSME is the next step in the process of Ukrainian economic integration with the EU and the symbol of increasing the role of small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) as a driver of the Ukrainian economy," Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade Yulia Klymenko said.
The corresponding agreement on Ukraine's participation in the EU program was signed in Brussels by European Commission Director General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs Lowri Evans and Representative of Ukraine in the European Union Mykola Tochytsky. The next step is the ratification of the agreement by parliament.
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The program for the current year that is available for Ukraine consists of 25 sub-programs, which are classified in three areas: simplifying SMEs' entering foreign markets, improving competitiveness and creating a culture of doing business. The program supports projects on various subjects, including clusters, tourism, chemical industry, facilitating access to public procurement, administrative burden reduction and protection of intellectual property rights for companies operating in countries which are not EU members.