The 3rd annual online conference on supporting the development of SMEs and entrepreneurship in BiH entitled “Entrepreneurship and Innovation” was held yesterday. The conference was organized by Eda – Enterprise Development Agency in cooperation with Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and the Mozaik Foundation, to contribute to finding answers to two current questions – the challenges we face:
- how to support and facilitate the creation of new companies started and run by youth?
- how to support and facilitate the creation of new added value in manufacturing SMEs?
The conference was opened by Mr. Torgny Svenungsson, Deputy Head of Mission and Head of Development Cooperation at the Embassy of Sweden in BiH, with whose support the project “European Small Business Act as a Framework for Strategies and Policies for SMEs in BiH – SBA in BiH” is being implemented.
In the first panel on youth entrepreneurship support, Mr. Zoran Puljić, director of the Mozaik Foundation and Dženan Šarić, director of the Startup studio program, presented a successful model of support for the creation of new companies by young entrepreneurs, created in accordance with good international practices and adapted to the context and challenges in BiH, with previous results and gained experiences. Young entrepreneurs Ms. Tamara Jović, director and co-owner of the social business “Super žena” from Zvornik and Mr. Nedim Hadžiosmanović, founder and director of the company “Doc.ba.” from Sarajevo, spoke about entrepreneurial challenges and forms of support that they find the most useful.
The second panel was dedicated to innovation, a reactive and creative model of behaviour of manufacturing companies and the creation of added value. The introductory speaker and moderator was Mr. Zdravko Miovčić, director of Eda. Mr. Željko Petrović, director of the company ELAS Metalexpert from Banja Luka and Suad Ećo, director of Ećo company from Sarajevo presented their development path, experiences and recommendations (which would facilitate their further development and which would help other companies to follow their direction, so that we have more innovative and flexible manufacturing firms). Ms. Karin Rau, Project Manager of Innovation and Digitization in SMEs in BiH project, spoke about supporting innovation in new projects and plans for SME development.
In the last part of the conference, it was discussed how innovative manufacturing firms can contribute to the creation of new firms and how new firms can contribute to the innovation of manufacturing firms.
All conference participants had the opportunity to share their experiences, opinions and suggestions with others and thus contribute to finding effective answers to key conference questions. Many valuable ideas, proposals and recommendations were obtained, which can be very useful in the preparation of development strategies and projects to support SMEs and entrepreneurship for the period 2021-2027, as well as action plans to support innovation in SMEs 2021-2023, whose production is in progress.
We once again thank the partners, panellists and participants of the conference for their cooperation and active participation, as well as the Embassy of Sweden in BiH for their understanding and support.