SME Business Portals

Business-friendly public services for entrepreneurs

The challenge: making the market a more transparent place

Tools and services established to help SMEs are of little use if the target enterprises do not know how to access them. Entrepreneurs often face bureaucratic complexity and difficulty accessing important business information, which would help them to interact with the market more effectively.

Our approach: single entry point business portals

UNIDO is building bridges between Governments and businesses by developing portals that offer integrated access to information on regulatory and administrative requirements, support institutions and programmes and simple business advice, especially useful for potential entrepreneurs and small business start-ups. Administrative information provided can range from where to apply to get a restaurant operation license to requirements that need to be satisfied when operating a medical clinic. Small business advice can cover areas such as marketing, human resources management, accessing bank loans, simple financial management tools.

On-line provision of regulatory information and services can increase the efficiency and coverage of public service delivery to small firms, improve their compliance with the rule of law and provide opportunities for simplification of administrative requirements as a result of feedback from the business community. Accessing on-line business advice may encourage aspiring entrepreneurs to seek more specialized training and consulting services later.

UNIDO, with its longstanding experience in SME development, is assisting governments and SME support institutions to take-up these opportunities and to address them in an integrated manner.

The concept applied: government business portal

In 2006 UNIDO assisted the Vietnamese Government in the development of an SME policy framework, institutional capacity building and business development services to improve the support frameworks for SMEs.

In close cooperation with the Agency for SME development and 19 collaborating ministries, agencies and departments, UNIDO contributed to the establishment of Viet Nam’s Government Business Portal.

The portal contains today:

  • More than 300 user-friendly business license fact sheets
  • Over 7,000 pages of downloadable legal texts associated with administrative requirements
  • Business advisory services for small businesses and comprehensive information on SME support institutions, policies and programmes

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