Improving business development and cooperation of SMEs in Krosno-Przemyśl, Lviv and Grodno subregions. Funding: Poland-Belarus-Ukraine 2007-2013 Program.
Specific aims of the project: Establishing long-lasting cooperation between entrepreneurs from the SME sector and institutions supporting SMEs from 3 border regions and increasing the implementation of innovative solution, gaining the necessary knowledge regarding conducting cross-border cooperation, increase of trade promotion, development of cross-border and foreign trade and knowledge about enterprises.
Addressed problems: low level of innovativeness and competitiveness of SMEs of the three regions, lack of knowledge, skills and awareness of entrepreneurs and institutions supporting business in starting cross-border trade cooperation, insufficient promotion of enterprise trade offers from the three regions, not enough cooperation of entrepreneurs from the borderline area of Poland, Belarus and Ukraine in media
Implementation: Promotion-informative actions, creating the website (portal) – cross-border database of cooperation for entrepreneurs in four languages, analysis of entrepreneurship potential in the three regions, conducting seminars for entrepreneurs and institutions supporting entrepreneurs, study visits, cooperation meeting of entrepreneurs from the area of three regions. Target Group: SMEs from the 3 subregions of Poland, Belarus and Ukraine. Beneficiaries: institutions involved in supporting enterprises from the SME sector: universities, associations, local governments and other organizations that refer to the issue of supporting SMEs. Budget: EUR 264,772.07.
Human resourses: experts/specialists of cross-border cooperation of SMEs and institutions supporting business, partners’ employees, lecturers of universities, training companies, trainers, merits coordinator experienced and qualified in project management, tasks coordination, control and supervision
Evidence of success
Evidence of success: creation of a 4-language portal - cooperation database containing a catalog of commercial offers, 450 participants acquired knowledge and skills in effective cross-border cooperation, 90 project participants raised their qualifications, knowledge and experience through participation in seminars, in study visits (26 SMEs), exchange of knowledge and experience among SMEs from 3 areas of project implementation - by 65% between institutions supporting SMEs - by 70%.
The challenges dealt with: different levels and nature of the transformation of Polish, Ukrainian, Belarussian economies, disparities between individual regions, underdevelopment of private enterprises, the lack of relationships between various types of education in border regions.
Potential for learning or transfer
In terms of SMEs internationalization, the practice enables neighbouring countries to establish long-lasting cooperation and increase competitiveness of the cross-border regions. Cooperation of SMEs with educational institutions such as universities may contribute to the increase of innovativeness of enterprises. Potential success factors: long-lasting cooperation and increase competitiveness of the cross-border regions of Poland, Belarus and Ukraine. Potential obstacles: legal issues related to customs policy and visa policy.