DIFASS – Small topic, big impact: micro loans

Posted on 20/09/2012
The first DIFASS international workshop took place at Tehnopol in Tallinn, Estonia. Over 40 guests from all over Europe came together to discuss micro loans – a type of government support measure to make investment capital accessible to small enterprises. WSX Enterprise represented the UK.

The DIFASS project facilitates access to finance for SMEs by exchanging innovative business support measures across Europe. The focus will be on the development and implementation of non-grant based financial support instruments, such as revolving funds, transregional funds and venture capital funds.

Highlights included the Estonian micro loans scheme managed by Kredex in cooperation with local commercial banks and the Entrepreneurship Promotion Fund by INVEGA of Lithuania.

A very interesting tool for many regions across Europe is the internet-based micro finance management system www.CREDINFO.eu, as presented by András Nagy of ZMVA from Hungary. This tool will be the main focus of attention of the next DIFASS meeting in Vonyarcvashegy, Hungary on October 16-17. At this next meeting we will lay the foundation to transfer this innovative tool to other regions in Europe, including Tallinn (EST), Bratislava (SK), Castilla y Leon (ES) and Sardinia (IT).

DIFASS has an interactive www.difass.eu website with the latest news on financing support schemes for small enterprises, it includes Twitter feeds @DIFASS and videos.

The project is supported by the INTERREG IVC Programme. The overall objective of the programme is to improve the effectiveness of regional policies and instruments. INTERREG IVC provides funding for interregional cooperation across Europe. It is implemented under the European Community’s territorial co-operation objective and financed through the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).