The ASEM SMEs Eco-Innovation Center(ASEIC) was established in 2011 to promote cooperation of green growth in Europe and Asia, with a particular emphasis on enhancing eco-innovation of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in both regions. Agreeing on the importance of SMEs as main engines of innovation and growth, Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) member countries joined together to establish ASEIC as an international platform for spreading eco-innovation principles and practices among SMEs and assisting them in harnessing the new business opportunities that arise out of such principles and practices.
In Europe, SMEs represent 99 percent of all businesses, providing jobs to more than 100 million people. In Asia, SMEs constitute the lifeblood of many industries as they grapple with the present global economic crisis
European Commission Recommendation
A legally independent company with no more than 500 employees.
The only way to reduce poverty in a sustainable way is to promote economic growth, through wealth and employment creation. In developing countries, SMEs are the major source of income, a breeding ground for entrepreneurs and a provider of employment.
UNIDO, WSIS Report
The definition of an SME is important for access to finance and support programs targeted specifically at these companies. SMEs are not limited to any particular type of industry or service, and can include small manufacturing facilities, small processing units, trading companies, export-import companies, distribution, retailing, rental, service company, etc.