The meeting was attended by the representatives of regional loan and guarantee funds, representatives of banking and crediting institutions, advisory and consulting companies as well as local entrepreneurs. The group was invited to help and participate in the implementation of the international project "Access to Microfinance for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises - ATM for SME`s", realized between April 1, 2016 and March 31, 2021.

There were 24 experts invited at this stage however the team of experts will be expanded during the project’s cycle. The theme of the first meeting was the presentation of the roadmap and initial analysis of the current situation of the companies from Świętokrzyskie Region in terms of the access to microfinance, particularly loans and guarantees.

The expert meeting helped to review the regional banking and non-banking offer , in terms of scale, scope of financial support for local entrepreneurs, the necessary requirements and security system and the level of public knowledge about loans and financing. Labour market trends and opportunities to increase the employment locally was analysed. The experts exchanged knowledge on the system of incentives and risks involved in making business and setting up companies in Świętokrzyskie Region.

The stakeholders paid attention to the overproduction of legislation, the intricacies of the Tax Code and the challenges facing the SME sector in the conduct of the recruitment process of new employees.

Among the needs identified was the increase in accessing the microfinancing opportunities to improve the existing policies and initiatives, strategies to prevent financial exclusion, assuring access to credit programs and launching public awareness campaigns. The next meeting is scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2016.