Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the engine driving the success of the German economy. Known in Germany - and increasingly worldwide - as the "German Mittelstand", our small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are indispensable for growth, jobs and innovation in Germany. Their traditionally strong regional ties and well-developed sense of commercial responsibility make them a pillar of our Social Market Economy. However, in today's age of globalisation, demographic change, digitisation and energy transition, many SMEs face particularly strong challenges compared to other companies due to their size or to their management and staff structure.
To help the German Mittelstand companies to remain vigorous, strong and innovative, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy - the ministry responsible for SMEs - presented the "Future of the German Mittelstand" Action Programme in July 2015. The programme contains key measures and initiatives for SME policy. This new edition of the "Future of the German Mittelstand" Action Programme documents the evolution of German SME policy.