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Romania’s SMEs on the Way to EU’s Twin Transition to Digitalization and Sustainability


European Commission’s six priorities for 2019-2024 are all in line with and leverage each other to support Europe’s twin transition to digitalization and sustainability; aiming to address the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, The Recovery Plan for Europe adds resilience as key dimension of EU’s progress, while reinforcing its commitment to the green and digital transformation. Counting for more than 99% of the enterprises, employing about two of three people, and generating more than a half of the value added - with similar weights as concerns Romania - EU’s SMEs are the engine of Europe's economy, therefore essential contributors to these transformative processes - as emphasized in the SME Strategy for a sustainable and digital Europe.

Against this background, the main questions the paper is addressing are: how ready the Romania’s SMEs are for the twin (digital and sustainability) transition the EU has embarked on? What are RO’s SMEs approaches to and performances on digitalization and sustainability against the EU27 SMEs’ average benchmark? How can the RO’s SMEs twin transition process may be speeded up? The analysis was mainly built on data provided by the Flash Eurobarometer 486: SMEs, start-ups, scale-ups and entrepreneurship (released in September 2020). The review of Eurobarometer 486 data on the two topics will then be examined and discussed, in order for the paper to eventually: identify the gaps between RO SMEs and EU27 SMEs in terms of perceptions, attitudes and behaviors related to the twin transition; explore the challenges (in terms of both opportunities and threats) RO’s SMEs face as regards the twin transition; provide some guidelines able to speed up the twin transition of RO’s SMEs.