On 13November, 2019 - Bulgarian partner -ARED, Vratsa participated in the consultative meeting of stakeholders from the Northwest planning region of Bulgaria, organized by PwC-Bulgaria, Ministry of Economy and BSMEPA.

The aim of the meeting was to present to the representatives of the business and administration, business support organizations and other interested parties the current situation of SMEs in the region and present the concept for the elaboration of the National Strategy for Small and Medium Enterprises( SMEs)in Bulgaria for 2021-2027. The "bottom-up" consultative approach includes meetings in each planning region of Bulgaria and then an online survey for the collection of new ideas and effective proposals that could be eligible for the new strategy.

The PwC-Bulgaria experts presented statistics data regarding the SMEs in the region and trends for the last 10 years. Participants shared their experience and problems that occur in their work as well as during the discussion some proposals for tailored measures for the Northwest region were announced. On behalf of ARED, Nesrin Doneva presented the work under the OSS project for improving the ecosystem for startups and interlink with the National Strategy for SMEs and an especially regional focus on specific support for the start ups by using Good practices and Action plan for policy instrument improvement.