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Environmental Incentives for Nordic SMEs

Nordregio Report 2002:7

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) play a significant role in Nordic economic development through creating employment, stimulating competition and developing new technologies and products. However, these companies are often disadvantaged by internal and external constraints that prevent them from realising their full potential. Nordic
governments acknowledge that environmental management forms one of these constraints, and accordingly its integration into working practices is supported by a range of public sector financial assistance schemes.

However, to date, there has been no exploration of the extent of this provision, nor is there any comparative knowledge of the impact that these "environmental incentives" have on the environmental performance or the economic competitiveness of Nordic SMEs. This report presents the first cross-national overview of the main environmental incentives available for SMEs in the Nordic countries.