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New Zealand leads international SME research

25 January 2006

New Zealand leads international SME research

Small businesses in New Zealand have the opportunity to help change the international environment for exporters, says Small Business Minister Lianne Dalziel.

Led by New Zealand, two international agencies - APEC and the OECD - are surveying thousands of owners of small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) on the barriers they face when exporting goods, said Lianne Dalziel. "This will be one of the biggest surveys of SMEs ever undertaken, spanning 44 economies and potentially tens of thousands of small businesses. New Zealand has played a key role in making the survey happen by contributing to the basic design and methodology and pushing to have the survey distributed widely.

"This is a great opportunity for New Zealand businesses to connect with an international initiative to better understand issues small businesses face when exporting goods. Governments around the world will get to hear what they have to say.

"As well as providing SMEs with a voice on the international stage, I will be making sure that the survey's findings help inform government decisions in New Zealand. It will dovetail well with this government's emphasis on delivering strategies for growth, innovation and productivity.

"I urge all small businesses to have their say. The survey only takes about 20 minutes to complete and it can be done online at www.oecd.org/cfe/sme."

New Zealand policy makers are also being questioned separately to collect information on current programmes aimed at helping SMEs overcome barriers to exporting.

"By sharing all this information we can more readily identify practical ways of reducing, or even removing these barriers," said Lianne Dalziel.

The survey closes on 30 April and the results will be published later in the year.

ENDS

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