Programme [click here for pdf-version]
10.30-11.00 Introductory Presentation by ECMI
11.00-12.30 Session 1. The role of public policies for SME financing
This panel will set the framework of the debate on SME financing and public intervention. Each national government and the EU have considered the use of public resources to improve SME financing, mainly through bank financing. The panel will discuss whether these resources are likely to alleviate SME difficulties. Departing from the very sensitive political debate around this issue, the panel will highlight where are the market failures preventing SMEs to growth at a faster pace and get an appropriate size of finance. With in mind the objective of promotion of growth and innovation, the panel will address which are the firms that are more in need of support and the effectiveness of main policies enacted so far to address these issues. Key questions to be discussed by the panel:
- What do we mean by SMEs?
- Does SME financing require public support, and why? And are resources put forward so far enough?
- What kinds of market failures are preventing an optimal financing for European SMEs?
- What are criteria, beyond size, to assess the effectiveness of a policy tool?
13.30-15.00 Session 2. Exploring the effectiveness of market-based solutions
There is no silver-bullet to solve SME financing difficulties. The complexity of the issue calls for many different factors to play a different role. Bureaucracy, taxation, macroeconomic factors, and country risk are only some of the variables influencing the ability of SMEs to access finance. Diversification in funding sources for SMEs, therefore, becomes a crucial factor of success. This panel will explore what capital markets are offering to entrepreneurs and how their role can be potentially improved in providing financing alternatives to the traditional bank-loan channel.
Key questions to be discussed by the panel:
- What are capital markets offering now to SMEs and what is the effectiveness of these actions to ensure greater access to finance for SMEs?
- To what category of SMEs are these initiatives addressed to?
- What kind of new financing tools can be developed (such as hybrid banking-capital markets tools) and how existing capital markets tools (equity and debt listing) can be further improved?
- Are these alternative sources of funding sufficient to ensure that in the medium long-run markets will channel enough resources to SMEs? Is there space for public intervention? And where are market failures to be addressed to ensure a better capital markets financing?
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