Small and Medium Enterprises

There is broad agreement that small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are vital to achieving decent and productive employment as they globally account for two-thirds of all jobs and also create the majority of new jobs. Therefore, the promotion of SMEs has been a key area of intervention for the ILO. Its advisory services on SME policies are in high demand among ILO member countries. The ILO provides added value because of its focus on both the quantitative and qualitative aspects of employment creation and the fact that it serves constituents that provide a large potential outreach.

The 2015 ILO Report on SMEs and employment creation provides up-to-date evidence on the relevance of SMEs for employment, the key constraints faced by SMEs and their workers, and the effectiveness of measures to support this enterprise segment.


  1. © Long Hongtao / XINHUA 2017

    World Employment and Social Outlook 2017 – Sustainable enterprises and jobs

    ILO calls for new strategies to help SMEs get loans

    16 October 2017

  2. © Bill Lyons/ World Bank 2017

    Our impact, their voices

    Learning to run a small business in conflict and poverty-wracked Yemen

    11 October 2017

  3. World Employment and Social Outlook Report 2017

    What are six key ingredients to promote sustainable enterprises?

    09 October 2017

  4. © AFP China Xtra 2017

    World Employment and Social Outlook: Sustainable Enterprises and Jobs

    Sluggish SME development hurts jobs and the economy, ILO says

    09 October 2017

  5. World Employment and Social Outlook (WESO) 2017

    ILO flagship report to focus on sustainable enterprises and job creation in SMEs

    03 October 2017