Kick off for the CEN-CENELEC SMEs Working Group

Date

05 Feb 2010

Sections

Competition
Global Europe
Trade & Society

Brussels, 4 February 2010 - The newly formed SME Working Group (SME WG)
established by CEN (The European Committee for Standardization) and CENELEC
(The European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization), met for the first time on
4 February 2010. The set-up of this new SME WG will allow closer monitoring of the
actions targeting SMEs in the European standardization arena, and ensure their
implementation and follow-up.

Born from a common will of both European standards organisations to continuously
improve their efforts to facilitate the access of Small and Medium sized Enterprises
(SMEs) to standards work, this new SME WG aims to contribute to an increased
competitiveness of European SMEs, which will enable them to strengthen the vital role
they already play in the European economy.

CEN and CENELEC are committed to help SMEs get easier and safer access to
standardization, as it provides European companies with a means to be competitive,
thus allowing them access to state-of-the-art technology. Already in 2009, in order to
address the issues SMEs face, two projects were started: the SME Standardization
Toolkit (SMEST) and the SME Access to European Standardization project. The SME
WG will look at their continued implementation and strive further for new actions and
projects. The SME WG embodies CEN and CENELEC’s commitment towards SMEs,
acting as a platform to exchange ideas and best practices.

This high-level SME WG reports to the CEN-CENELEC administrative boards (known
under the name of CAs). Convenor is Mike Low from the British Standards Institute
(BSI), and the secretariat is held by Andreea Gulacsi from the CEN-CENELEC
Management Centre.

Participants of this SME WG include stakeholders from CEN and CENELEC National
members; DG Enterprise and Industry (DG ENTR) of the European Commission (more
specifically from its Small and Medium Enterprises, and Standardization’s units); the
European Free Trade Association (EFTA); as well as CENELEC cooperating partner
ORGALIME (The European Engineering Industries Association representing the
interests of the Mechanical, Electrical, Electronic, Metalworking & Metal Articles
Industries); and CEN Associated Partner, NORMAPME (European Office of Crafts,
Trades and Small and Medium sized Enterprises for Standardisation).

The main objective of the SME WG is the follow-up of the CEN-CENELEC’s 58
recommendations emanating from the “SME Access to standardization project” in better
coordinating and monitoring their implementation.

The SME WG has the ambition to “make the difference”, as Mike Low said, in reaching
out to SMEs, SME trade associations and their related networks. For this, all
stakeholders and interested parties, such as the European Standards Organisations,
the European Commission and the national governments, need to join forces to work
towards a common benefit: helping SMEs means helping the European market and
economy.

For further information, please check CEN website page: www.cen.eu