Support for SMEs > Access to knowledge

EU4Business: From Policies to Action

€4 million
Investment focus: 
SME, governments

Start/end date: 2017 - 2020
Countries covered: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine
Implementing partner: OECD
EU budget: €4 million

This multi-country project supports competitiveness and business environment reforms in the Eastern Partnership countries, working both at country and regional level. At country level, the OECD provides tailored support in the design, monitoring and upgrading of strategies and programmes to support private sector development, evidence based policy making and broader business environment reforms. At regional level, the OECD stimulates reform implementation through peer reviews and regional policy dialogue. Together with its partner organisations (European Commission, EBRD and European Training Foundation), the OECD will also carry out a third Small Business Act for Europe assessment to monitor progress in the implementation of policy reforms, benchmark performance and identify future priorities for SME development. 


The main objective is to support competitiveness and business environment reforms in the Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries.

Specifically, the project aims to:

  • strengthen institutional frameworks and the delivery of government support to the private sector and improve the business environment;
  • support the monitoring and evaluation of private sector development policies and improve the production of business statistics;
  • support evidence-based policy-making and regional benchmarking;
  • stimulate reform implementation, through peer reviews and regional policy dialogue.


Policy makers in the area of private sector development, relevant government agencies, business intermediary organisations and, ultimately, the private sector in the six EaP countries.


At country level

While tailoring support to each country's needs and specificities, the project’s main activities include:

  • Assisting governments in preparing strategies and action plans and proposing key performance indicators to assess results
  • Strengthening the policy making process by introducing public-private stakeholder processes
  • Assisting governments in monitoring progress in the implementation of competitiveness reforms and targeted policy roadmaps
  • Assisting governments in the production, analysis and dissemination of harmonised business statistics

At regional level

Main activities include to:

  • Revise SBA (Small Business Act) assessment methodology
  • Organise one private sector focus group meeting per country and three SBA stakeholder workshops per country to facilitate the SBA assessment process
  • Carry out government self-assessment and OECD assessment of the SBA in six countries
  • Publish regional report
  • Organise three regional meetings of the OECD Eurasia Competitiveness Roundtable
  • Carry out six peer reviews (2017: Armenia, 2018: Azerbaijan, Georgia, 2019: Belarus, Moldova, Ukraine)

Expected results include:

  • Improved strategic policy framework for private sector development (strategies/action plans)
  • Enhanced institutional capacity of the government to deliver support to the private sector
  • Enhanced contribution of business associations to policy making processes
  • Enhanced capacity to monitor implementation of government policy
  • Availability of structural and business demography statistics
  • Third SBA assessment published, disseminated and used for policy making
  • Peer reviews on competitiveness reforms carried out