April 24, 2020
The Small and Medium Enterprise Agency (SMEA) compiled and hereby releases reports titled “Trends among Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in FY2019” and “SME Policies in FY2020” (“2020 White Paper on Small and Medium Enterprises in Japan”), as well as “Trends among Small Enterprises in FY2019” and “Small Enterprise Policies in FY2020” (“2020 White Paper on Small Enterprises in Japan”), on which a Cabinet Decision was made on April 24, 2020.
1. Characteristics of the 2020 White Paper on Small and Medium Enterprises in Japan and the 2020 White Paper on Small Enterprises in Japan
These 2020 White Papers (hereinafter refers to as the “reports”) focus on “roles and functions” which SMEs and small enterprises are expected to play and the “value” that these enterprises should create, and analyze the enhancement of economic value added and efforts contributing to stability and employment maintenance in regional areas. The reports also describe the impacts caused by the novel coronavirus disease, specific case examples of leading SMEs and small enterprises engaging in efforts for addressing the disease, and other issues.
2. Key Points of the reports
- Some companies have been reinvigorated, while others are forced to close businesses despite their high productivity.
- As SMEs have different goals that they aim to achieve, the government considers it important to provide support measures bearing in mind the roles and functions which respective SMEs are expected to play.
SMEs as sources of creating new value
- Enhancement of value added is indispensable for achieving both wage hikes and an increase in profits.
- It is important for SMEs to create new value by engaging in differentiation of products and services and development of new businesses.
- Collaboration with cross-sectoral companies or universities as well as investment in human resources will improve the potential of SMEs.
- It is important for SMEs to make efforts to convey their advantages in products and services to their customers and to improve terms and conditions of business with their customers.
Small enterprises as sources of creating new value in regional areas
- Small enterprises, playing role as supporters of people’s daily lives and communities in regional areas, also function as a contact point between residents and municipalities.
- Small enterprises are providers of opportunities in which a variety of human resources, including business operators per se, are able to play a leading role.
SMEs and small enterprises and support organizations
- The business operator side: Business operators should effectively make use of external support measures to make a plan-do-check-act (PDCA) cycle for improving management.
- The support organization side: Support organizations in a variety of fields should collaborate with each other, and thereby provide more effective support measures to companies.
- Outline of the 2019 White Paper on Small and Medium Enterprises in Japan (PDF:116KB)
- Outline of the 2019 White Paper on Small Enterprises in Japan (PDF:20KB)
Division in Charge
Research Office, Business Environment Department, Small and Medium Enterprise Agency