Step towards social enterprise economy needed - Ní Riada
Sinn Féin MEP Liadh Ní Riada has welcomed a report on the Implementation of the European Progress Microfinance facility, coming before the European Parliament today.
Speaking during the plenary debate in Strasbourg, Ms Ní Riada said
"The European Progress Microfinance Facility (Progress Microfinance), launched in 2010, increases the availability of microcredit – loans below € 25 000 – for setting up or developing a small business.
"This specifically targets those that desperately need support, such as SME's, entrepreneurs, women and those in long term unemployment.
"This is about fostering employment, fighting poverty and is a financial instrument vis-à-vis employment and social innovation. This also recognises, and focuses on, the need to encourage and nurture female entrepreneurs, and those who are who are most vulnerable and marginalised, to create employment for themselves and create decent quality jobs.
MEP for Ireland South, Ms Ní Riada continued,
"I am currently the lead negotiator on a report in the European Committee on Budget around the impact SMEs have in the EU and this European Progress Microfinance Facility is a step in the right direction towards a social enterprise economy.
"Whilst this has been a great step forward, I am more than disappointed that it is coming to an end in April 2016 and is up for review. I look forward to the next steps following the review in terms of the Social innovation Programme 2016 and will continue to give it my utmost support." ENDS