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by Shazly Zain
The EU Business Avenues in Southeast Asia is an EU-funded business promotion programme that supports the internationalisation of European small-and medium enterprises (SMEs).
Through various missions, the Business Avenues programme permits innovative European SMEs to venture into Southeast Asia with the view to establishing long-term collaborations with local counterparts.
Singapore plays an important role as a hub for the region and each business mission covers Singapore and one additional market, including Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia and the Philippines.
Over the span of five years, the Business Avenues programme covers several dynamic sectors; Environment & Water Technologies, Green Energy, Information & Communication Technologies, Healthcare & Medical Technologies, Organic Food & Beverages as well as Contemporary European Design and Construction & Building.
Two successful business missions took place in 2016 and four missions are held in 2017. These missions involve European companies participating in fairs and stand-alone events while engaging in business-to-business meetings with relevant stakeholders and potential business partners. Close collaborations with events such as the Singapore International Energy Week, CommunicAsia, Singapore International Water Week and the International Furniture Fair Singapore have allowed fruitful connections with companies and public sector agencies.
The numerous success stories resulting from the business missions include for example LG Sonic, a Dutch algae monitoring solutions company, signing a contract with the Public Utilities Board of Singapore, and Irish waste water tech company OxyMem winning the TechXchange 2016 award.
Visit www.eubuinessavenues.com for more information on future business missions, how to meet the European companies as well as how to apply to participate.
(Shazly Zain interned with the Economic and Trade Section of the EU Delegation to Singapore)