Small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) are a key driver of economic growth and social inclusion. In the OECD area, they account for about 70% of total employment and between 50% and 60% of value added. In emerging and developing economies, they contribute to more than one third of GDP and account for between 34% and 52% of formal employment.
I want to congratulate the Argentinian Presidency for developing the Roadmap to Infrastructure as an Asset Class. The OECD strongly supports this important initiative and has actively contributed to its development over the past months.
All great things come to an end! We have reached the conclusion of the 2018 Ministerial Conference on SMEs. My thanks to the Mexican Government for hosting us, and for its leadership in elevating SME issues on the international policy agenda.
I am delighted to open the 2018 OECD SME Ministerial Conference on “Strengthening SMEs and Entrepreneurship for Productivity and Inclusive Growth”.
It is my pleasure to present the 2018 OECD Scoreboard on Financing SMEs and Entrepreneurs. This is the seventh edition of our annual flagship publication, which now covers 43 countries. I’d like to thank Minister Guajardo for his support on this important topic.
The global economy is now growing at its fastest pace since 2010, with the upturn becoming increasingly synchronised across countries.
Thank you for inviting me to this distinguished event. You meet at a critical time for the steel business as there is a lot at stake for the months to come. Let me start with the big picture.
It is a pleasure to be here today to launch the 2017 OECD Scoreboard on Financing SMEs and Entrepreneurs. It is an honour to welcome Minister Padoan, an old friend of the OECD, here at our Washington Centre. And it is a very timely moment to take a closer look at the issue of SME finance.
Presentations and main topics discussed at the 81st Session of the Steel Committee held in Paris, 8 September 2016.
Thank you for your welcome, and thank you to the Washington International Trade Association for hosting today’s event. The OECD is a longstanding advocate of open markets. I am delighted to be among so many ‘‘friends of trade’’ to share the OECD’s latest data, analysis and reflections on developments in the global trade landscape.