EMCC European Monitoring Centre on Change

Luxembourg: ERM comparative analytical report on Public support instruments to support self-employment and job creation in one-person and micro enterprises

  • Observatory: EMCC
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  • Published on: 12 January 2012



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In Luxembourg, there are a number of public support instruments that support self-employment and job creation in one-person and micro enterprises. However, these instruments are aimed at either enterprises in general or at Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs), which form the main target group of the policy discourse on supporting enterprises and entrepreneurship in the Luxembourgish economy. Nonetheless, as micro enterprises are an integral part of SMEs and the self-employed are also at least implicitly addressed by a number of public instruments, several instruments pertaining to these groups have been developed by different actors in recent years.

QUESTIONNAIRE

Part 1: Overall policy context

This section aims at giving a brief overview of the general development and status quo of the policy discussion and thereof resulting instruments, measures or initiatives in the field of fostering self-employment and job creation in one-person and micro enterprises (less than 10 employees). Focus is mainly on the developments during the last decade, that is before the global recession. In addition we are asking for your indication of change of policy focus since the recession.

1. General policy approach in the area of self-employment, one-person and micro enterprises at the national level

Policies in the area of self-employment as well as one-person and micro enterprises are often closely related to policies aimed at small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). In Luxembourg, SMEs play an important role in the economy. Currently there are about 17,000 SMEs, which employ around 150,000 people making up some 40% of Luxembourg’s labor force. Throughout the last decade the SME sector has seen substantial growth with roughly 40,000 new jobs being created in that time span. Additionally, about 1,000 new enterprises were registered annually in recent years.

The main responsibility for policy pertaining to SMEs within Luxembourg’s government lies with the Ministry of the Middle Classes, Tourism and Housing and the Ministry of the Economy and Foreign Trade. As the importance of SMEs for economic growth, job creation and vocational training in Luxembourg’s economy received increasing attention in the past, the Ministry of the Middle Classes launched a policy initiative to specifically support SMEs in Luxembourg. This initiative took the form of an action plan for small and medium-sized enterprises (plan d’action PME). The first such plan was created in 1996 and has been succeeded by a second plan in 2001 and most recently the third action plan that was published in 2008. These action plans comprise different policy actions in a variety of areas aiming to improve e.g. administrative, regulatory and fiscal conditions for SMEs. However, these plans contain little to no measures that are specifically aimed at micro enterprises (très petites enterprises, TPE) or one-person enterprises. Most of the measures outlined in these action plans are more generally aimed at improving the conditions of all types of SMEs and to foster the creation of new enterprises in general with a small number of measures specifically aimed at promoting self-employment.


1.1 Has there been a policy focus/debate on the specific challenges facing entrepreneurship as tool for job creation before the global recession? If so, since when and for how long?

There has been an ongoing policy focus on fostering entrepreneurship for some time in Luxembourg. It is difficult to discern since when exactly this focus exists, but one of the earliest policy documents that proposes concrete measures to foster entrepreneurship with the aim of creating jobs and increasing the competitiveness of the Luxembourgish economy is the action plan for small and medium-sized enterprises of 1996. Judging by the regular updates of this action plan and the constant focus on entrepreneurship described in the activity reports of the responsible ministries’, the policy focus on entrepreneurship in Luxembourg has been continuous.

Table 1: Presence of policy focus/debate on entrepreneurship as facilitation for job creation before the crisis
 

Yes, continuously since at least 1996

Yes, on and off in the last 10 years

(Please indicate ‘X’ where it applies)

Yes, has been in focus, but since xx it is no longer part of the policy focus (Please indicate year)

No, it has never had policy focus before the recession

(Please indicate ‘X’ where it applies)

Self-employment

X

     
Hiring the first employee      

X

Hiring additional employees/creating additional jobs in micro enterprises      

X


1.2. What is the main focus in policy documents or strategies in relation to public or social partner based support instruments for fostering self-employment or job creation in one-person and micro enterprises? (Please indicate ‘X’, multiple answers possible)

Some of the most recent policy documents relevant to subject at hand are the 2008 action plan for small and medium-sized enterprises, the latest activity reports of the Ministry of the Middle Classes and the Ministry of the Economy, as well as the more general government programme of 2009.

One of the main focus points in policy debates relevant to the self-employed and micro enterprises has been the government’s expressed plan to significantly reduce the administrative burden weighing on SMEs in Luxembourg, e.g. by creating a ‘one-stop-shop’ for SMEs to be able to conduct all of their administrative business with the government through one contact point.

The government’s programme also foresees the improvement of the legal standing of the self-employed, planning to grant them equal social rights as are being given to employed workers.

Table 2: Main focus in the policy documents or strategies
 

Entrepreneurship (Business development in general)

Job creation (Employment)

Growth (Competitiveness)

Others (please specify)

Self-employment

Development of an improved legal standing of the self-employed granting them similar rights as employed workers to encourage self-employment.

     
Hiring the first employee        
Hiring additional employees/creating additional jobs in micro enterprises        


1.3. Please elaborate on the answer given above (with a focus on those developments aimed at employment creation and growth) and indicate if the financial recession has caused a change of focus:

The analysed documents do not give an indication that the recent economic and financial crisis has caused a major change of focus in the policies concerning the self-employed and micro enterprises. The Luxembourgish government has certainly taken some direct measures to counter the negative impact of the crisis on SMEs such as the initiative ‘VaccinAntiCrise’, which helps companies affected by the crisis by offering them expert guidance, as well as indirect measures like the continued high levels of public investment that also help SMEs. However, the choosing of the main focus of the policies pertaining to the self-employed and micro enterprises undertaken since 2008 does not appear to have been influenced in any significant way by the crisis. Nonetheless, the social partners have underlined the importance of some of their policy proposals stressing the role of an improved competitiveness of Luxembourgish companies in countering the effects of the crisis. Using this argument Luxembourg’s business federation FEDIL has for example demanded the revision of the legal status of the self-employed. Additionally, some of the social partners also offer specific services to help their members cope with the effects of the crisis, as for example the anti-crisis advice (Conseils Anti-Crise) of the Chamber of Trades (Chambre des Métiers).

Table 3: The policy content and significance of the financial recession
Self-employment
Elaboration of content (please describe and also indicate whether it is treated explicitly/implicitly)  

Change due to the financial recession

Please tick:

Yes: □

No: x

If ‘Yes’, please elaborate:

Hiring the first employee
Elaboration of content (please describe and also indicate whether it is treated explicitly/implicitly)  

Change due to the financial recession

Please tick:

Yes: □

No: x

If ‘Yes’, please elaborate:

Hiring additional employees/creating additional jobs in micro enterprises
Elaboration of content (please describe and also indicate whether it is treated explicitly/implicitly)  

Change due to the financial recession

Please tick:

Yes: □

No: x

If ‘Yes’, please elaborate:

2. Disincentives for self-employment and job creation

The following two questions will investigate whether there has been a change in the political agenda which has forced new political initiatives that may result in disincentives for job creation and business development (e.g. considerations regarding public budget).


2.1 Have public measures (e.g. with the aim to increase public revenue or cut public spending) led to disincentives for self-employment or job creation in one-person or micro enterprises before the financial recession? (Please briefly describe the major developments/initiatives (max. 300 words)

Generally, Luxembourg has long been a country with one of the lowest corporate tax-rates as well as one of the lowest VAT rates in Europe. In the time before the recession there has been a significant decrease in the central government corporate income tax rate from 30% to 22% in 2002. The self-employed social security contribution rates have remained stable over the past ten years with the maximum marginal rate at around 24% while the lower and upper thresholds have continuously risen. The employee social security contributions have also remained stable over the past ten years and were only slightly reduced after the crisis when the marginal rate was reduced from 11.52% to 10.95%. The social security contribution rates of employers have equally remained stable over the past decade with a marginal rate hovering slightly above 13% for most of that time period. Additionally, in 2006 the combined income tax rate (corporate income tax plus municipal business tax) in Luxembourg City was reduced from 37.45% to 29.63%. Public measures that increased disincentives for self-employment or job creation in one-person or micro enterprises were not found.


2.2 Have public measures (e.g. with the aim to increase public revenue or cut public spending) led to disincentives for self-employment or job creation in one-person or micro enterprises as a result of the financial recession? (Please describe – max. 300 words)

As Luxembourg was one of the few Western countries running a surplus in its public finances previous to the financial recession, yet, was hard hit by the crisis due to its dependence on international trade and the financial services industry, it needed to and could afford to create one of the largest fiscal stimulus packages relative to GDP among Western countries. Luxembourg also increased income tax thresholds, increased social benefits and reduced certain corporation taxes in response to the crisis. Yet, to offset the increased levels of public spending and to return to a balanced budget in 2014 the government decided to increase a number of taxes and to introduce a crisis tax. Specifically, the government raised the maximum marginal tax rate from 38% to 39%, introduced a new special tax rate of 42% for annual incomes above € 250,000, and created a ceiling for tax deductions for companies issuing bonus payments or so called ‘golden handshakes’. Additionally, the solidarity tax on businesses was increased by 1% and a 0.8% ‘crisis tax’ was introduced. Hence, there is a mixed picture concerning the effects public measures have had on the groups under study. While a rather generous stimulus package has likely had positive effects on the self-employed and micro enterprises, minor tax increases on businesses may have had negative effects on this group. No disincentives that explicitly affect self-employment or job creation in one-person or micro enterprises could be found.

3. Representation of/lobbying for self-employed and micro enterprises


Are self-employed and micro enterprises in your national context explicitly or implicitly (e.g. entrepreneurs or SMEs in general) represented by the following types of organisations (e.g. for lobbying, defending their interest etc.)?

The self-employed and micro enterprises in Luxembourg are implicitly represented by a number of organisations. The national ‘peak’ employer organisation is the Union of Luxembourg Companies (Union des Entreprises Luxembourgeoises, UEL), which represents all of the private sector – with the exception of the primary sector – through its member organisations. The self-employed are implicitly represented by the UEL, since they have to register with the Chamber of Trades or the Chamber of Commerce, which in turn are members of the UEL. Micro enterprises are also implicitly represented by the UEL as there are no restrictions regarding size of the enterprises to become a member of the UEL. The UEL defends its members’ interests as employers and lobbies on their behalf both on the national and European level.

At sectoral level there are the Chamber of Trades and the Chamber of Commerce, which respectively represent the interest of craft companies and of entrepreneurs in general and have a strong consultative role in the legislative process. There are also a large number of sectoral employer associations, which represent the interest of businesses and employers from different industry sectors (e.g. La Fédération des Artisans, La Confédération Luxembourgeoise due Commerce, FEDIL – Business Federation Luxembourg). However, no employers’ association specifically addressing the self-employed or micro enterprises were found.

On the employees’ side, there is a syndicate specifically representing the interest of the self-employed and SMEs in Luxembourg (Syndicat des Indépendants et des Classes Moyennes du Luxembourg). Other organisations on the employees’ side that are specifically addressed to micro enterprises or the self-employed were not found.

Table 4: Representation of self-employed and micro enterprises
 

Self-employed

Micro enterprises

Employers’ organisations

Yes, implicitly: Union des Entreprises Luxembourgeoises

La Fédération des Artisans

Fedil - Business Federation Luxembourg

Yes, implicitly: Chamber of Commerce

Chamber of Trade

Yes, implicitly: Union des Entreprises Luxembourgeoises

La Fédération des Artisans

Fedil - Business Federation Luxembourg

Yes, implicitly: Chamber of Commerce

Chamber of Trade

Employees’ organisation

Yes, explicitly: Syndicat des Indépendants et des Classes Moyennes du Luxembourg Yes, explicitly: Syndicat des Indépendants et des Classes Moyennes du Luxembourg

Not-for-profit organisations

No

No

Others

   

Part 2: Identification and description of relevant recent support instruments

The following section asks for the identification of public or social partner based support instruments initiated during or after the recent economic crisis (that is, 2008 onwards). These measures might have, but must not necessarily have been triggered by the recession. Measures may also have been initiated earlier, but changed in order to adapt to the recession or other recent developments. Rather than a comprehensive list of all instruments available at national, regional or local level, the most important, most innovative, most interesting and most effective tools are to be described. Thereof, a selection of up to three ‘Good Practices’ to be described in more detail is to be made.

1. Selection of region(s) when total coverage of the entire regional and local level is too comprehensive

When providing the brief overview and the three ‘Good Practices’ in this section of the questionnaire, measures and instruments at national level have to be included. We would in addition ask you to include regional and local level initiatives where relevant. Nonetheless, a complete coverage of regional and local levels may not be possible for all countries (e.g. because of a high degree of decentralisation resulting in a wide range of respective measures characterised by considerably heterogeneity). At the same time, it can be assumed that for instruments targeting at supporting self-employment and the creation of employment in one-person and micro enterprises the local administrative level is of considerable importance. If so, such measures will be designed to fit to the local characteristics and needs, resulting in a wide variety of different approaches. In this case, one or few local areas or regions may be selected to be covered in this report. Details on the selection are given in table 5.

Table 5: Administrative level/region(s) covered for the following research (max. 50 words per region)

Administrative level relevant for the rest of the questionnaire

As Luxembourg with a total population of roughly half a million inhabitants is one of the smallest countries in Europe with a fairly centralised government structure, the description of recent support instruments affecting the self-employed and micro enterprises will be limited to policies by the national government.

If a specific regional/local are is selected, please provide the following information

Name of region

 
Motivation for selecting this region

Facts about the region e.g.

- Geographic location

- No. of inhabitants

- Business structure (sector, size)

- Labour market

- Specific characteristics if applicable

 

2. Brief overview of recent instruments to foster self-employment or job creation in one-person and micro enterprises


2.1. Please provide a brief description (max. 800 words) of public or social partner based instruments recently initiated (2008 onwards) to support self-employment and job creation in one-person or micro enterprises.

Measures covered by the European Employment Observatory Review on self-employment 2010, European Commission, Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities are to be omitted to avoid duplication (see Part 3 of this questionnaire).

As the Luxembourgish government generally puts an emphasis on improving the situation of SMEs in the economy, there has been a number of policy proposals and actual instruments that have been initiated in recent years.

There are a number of existing measures (e.g. the ‘Trau dech – Mach dech Selbststänneg’ and the ‘Mini-Entreprises’ initiative, which allows students to make first experiences with entrepreneurship) to foster an entrepreneurial spirit among Luxembourg’s population and this is an issue that is repeatedly raised in recent policy documents, however, no concrete policy measures launched in 2008 or later were found.

Two measures that fall under the category of advice and counselling for self-employed were found and are described as best practice examples in more detail below. The ‘VaccinAntiCrise’ initiative was launched in May 2009 and the ‘Business Plan Toolbox’ was first launched in 2004, but has repeatedly been improved since.

The Chamber of Commerce has organised training courses specifically addressed at heads of enterprises since the 1980s. They implicitly deal with growth and sustainability as they offer training to heads of enterprises.

The Société Nationale de Crédit et d’Investissement Luxembourg (SNCI) offers the so called Prêts de création (start-up loans) for entrepreneurs starting a new SME.

There are efforts to reduce administrative burdens on enterprises in the framework of the Comité à la simplification administrative (CSA) (Committee for administrative simplification). The Chamber of Crafts actively participates in a number of working groups of that committee to work on measures to reduce the administrative burdens for enterprises.

A ‘one-stop-shop’ website has been created where enterprises can access all important information on running an enterprise in Luxembourg many formalities with the government can be completed (guichet.lu)

In June 2009 a law was passed to support RDI in the private sector. Among others it supports SME in relevant innovation processes, such as intellectual property protection and in temporarily hosting external personnel.

Further Measures

The Ministry of the Middle Classes has also begun – in response to the recent economic and financial crisis – to support Crafts and Commerce cooperatives financially by offering to cover up to 50% of their losses, in order to ensure a continuation of loans being made to SME.

Table 6: List of recent instruments

Title

Aim/objective

Promotion of entrepreneurial spirit

Description of support

It is a campaign that includes advertisements on television, in movie theatres and on the radio, as well as, a website.

Target group

The general population and in particular young people

Initiator and other actors involved

Ministry of the Economy and the Ministry of the Middle Class

Duration (please also indicate whether the measures has been initiated due to the recession)

The measure was first started in 2004 and is unrelated to the recent recession.

Title

Aim/objective

This online platform is meant to help people interested in creating a business with all necessary administrative work. Thus, it is a service meant to facilitate business creation.

Description of support

Provision of information on how to create a business in Luxembourg and how to create a business plan through an online platform.

Target group

The general public interested in creating a business and business students in particular.

Initiator and other actors involved

The project is led by the Institute Universitaire International Luxembourg (IUIL) in partnership with the Chamber of Commerce and the University of Luxembourg.

Duration (please also indicate whether the measures has been initiated due to the recession)

This project was first launched in 2004 and has thus not been initiated due to the crisis.

Title

Aim/objective

Provide Consulting Services to companies strongly affected by the recent recession, in order help them cope with the negative effects of the recession.

Description of support

Professional business consulting services are offered to companies affected by the crisis at favourable rates. The cost of these services can be subsidised by the government at up to 50% of total costs.

Target group

Private companies negatively affected by the recent recession.

Initiator and other actors involved

Chambre de Commerce Luxembourg, Chambre des Metiers Luxembourg.

Duration (please also indicate whether the measures has been initiated due to the recession)

The measure was started in May 2009 in response to the recession and is still running today.

Title

Aim/objective

Facilitating the transition of owners of established businesses through loans at favourable rates and ensuring that businesses whose owners are retiring can continue their operations with a new owner.

Description of support

Loans at favourable rates through a wholly state owned bank specifically for the buying of established businesses.

Target group

Entrepreneurs looking to buy a business

Initiator and other actors involved

Société Nationale de Crédit et d’Investissement Luxembourg (SNCI)

Duration (please also indicate whether the measures has been initiated due to the recession)

This measure was begun in 2009, but is not necessarily a consequence of the recession, as this problem existed before.


2.2. In-depth description of ‘Good Practices’

Please choose up to three examples from the above list that can be considered as ‘Good Practice’ (e.g. because of their effectiveness, innovative character or beneficial cooperation among different stakeholders) and describe them in detail.

Table 7: Description of ‘Good Practice’ examples of recent support instruments

Name of the programme/instrument

VaccinAntiCrise (Anti-Crisis Vaccine)

Is the instrument explicitly addressing any of the following:

Self-employment

Hiring the first employee

Hiring additional employees/creating additional jobs in micro enterprises

Please ‘X’ and/or describe if relevant

     

Operational level

Local

Regional

National

Please ‘X’ and/or describe if relevant

   

X

Rationale/motivation for the instrument

(please describe)

This instrument was launched on May 19th 2009 to counter the negative effects the economic crisis has had on enterprises throughout Luxembourg. It is not directly intended to create more jobs, but can indirectly have this effect as it helps enterprises to cope with the effects of the crisis and to secure jobs and eventually create new jobs in the long-term.

Purpose and aims for the instrument (please describe)

The aim of this instrument is to help enterprises cope with the negative effects of the financial and economic crisis by providing them with expert advice (consulting) at comparably low costs to further develop and adapt their business strategies.

Initiator
Please ‘X’

X (Chamber of Commerce)

     
Other stakeholders actively involved in implementation (please name them and describe their roles)

The Ministry of the Middle Classes provides subsidies for the services.

Target groups        
Please describe the target groups (sector, age, level of education, gender)

All enterprises in Luxembourg that were negatively affected by the crisis. The instrument has so far primarily attracted micro enterprises.

Funding        
Please describe the funding of the instrument/programme (national and European sources, budget available)

The services provided under this instrument have to be paid for by the enterprises, however, the Mutualité de Cautionnement et d'Aides aux Commerçants of the Chamber of Commerce can serve as a guarantor of bank loans taken out to pay for the services and the Luxembourgish government can provide subsidies of up to 50% for the services provided under this instrument.

Activities    
Please describe the activities of the programme or institutional initiative as detailed as possible

Enterprises chose a consultant from a pool of experts kept by the Chamber of Commerce. The consultants begin with an in-depth analysis of the situation of the business, then develop advice and support the actual implementation of developed measures. Lastly, they follow-up on and evaluate the taken course of action. The government has agreed on a rate for the consulting services of €800 per eight hour day. There are three different consulting ‘packages’ available costing between €4,000 and 20,000. The initiative has reached an agreement with banks willing to loan money to companies participating in the initiative at favourable rates. As stated above, the relevant ministry can provide a subsidy equalling up to 50% of the total cost of one consulting package for companies that make a request for financial aid. The exact amount of the subsidy lies at the discretion of the responsible ministry.

Results (Effectiveness)      
Please describe the results e.g. number of beneficiaries, advised enterprises

In the second half of 2009 there were 4,360 visits to the initiative’s website and 180 inquiries were made to the secretariat of the initiative. Up until March 2010, 45 initial analyses were made and 29 companies submitted business files for an in-depth analysis.

Challenges in order to reach the objectives e.g. for the organisation offering the instrument, the entrepreneurs (Please describe); and if available how these have been overcome

n/a

Assessments of the effectiveness e.g. investments made in order to reach the objectives of the programme (outcome vs. investment) (Please base this assessment on evaluations when possible)

The measure is listed in DG Enterprise’s Small Business Act – Database of good practices, but no actual assessments of the measure was found.

Outcomes (Efficiency)  
Increasing self-employment, growth and employment e.g. number of start-up and/or jobs created etc. (please describe, preferably based on evaluations, otherwise on experts’ assessment)

n/a

Please provide link to evaluation documents if possible

n/a

Example 2:

Name of the programme/instrument

Prêts de reprise (business transfer loan)

Is the instrument explicitly addressing any of the following:

Self-employment

Hiring the first employee

Hiring additional employees/creating additional jobs in micro enterprises

Please ‘X’ and/or describe if relevant

     

Operational level

Local

Regional

National

Please ‘X’ and/or describe if relevant

   

X

Rationale/motivation for the instrument

(please describe)

The rationale for this instrument is to assure the continued long-term operation of SME.

Purpose and aims for the instrument (please describe)

The instrument aims to grant potential buyers of a SME easier access to a loan needed to buy an enterprise.

Initiator
Please ‘X’      

X (Société National de Crédit et d’Investissement Luxembourg, SNCI)

Other stakeholders actively involved in implementation (please name them and describe their roles)

n/a

Target groups        
Please describe the target groups (sector, age, level of education, gender)

Potential buyers of SME

Funding        
Please describe the funding of the instrument/programme (national and European sources, budget available)

Whether there is a limit to the maximum value of all loans taken out under this instrument is not known.

Activities    
Please describe the activities of the programme or institutional initiative as detailed as possible

Those interested in buying an existing SME can apply for loans under this programme. They need to provide a business plan and 15% own funding. The minimum amount of the loan is €5,000 and the maximum is €250,000. The loan may not exceed 40% of the eligible amount and the usual period for repayment is between ten and 14 years.

Results (Effectiveness)      
Please describe the results e.g. number of beneficiaries, advised enterprises

No reports on the actual results of this instrument were found, but it was selected as an example of good practice by the European Commission’s DG Enterprise and Industry.

Challenges in order to reach the objectives e.g. for the organisation offering the instrument, the entrepreneurs (Please describe); and if available how these have been overcome

n/a

Assessments of the effectiveness e.g. investments made in order to reach the objectives of the programme (outcome vs. investment) (Please base this assessment on evaluations when possible)

n/a

Outcomes (Efficiency)  
Increasing self-employment, growth and employment e.g. number of start-up and/or jobs created etc. (please describe, preferably based on evaluations, otherwise on experts’ assessment)

n/a

Please provide link to evaluation documents if possible

n/a

Example 3:

Name of the programme/instrument

Business Plan Toolbox

Is the instrument explicitly addressing any of the following:

Self-employment

Hiring the first employee

Hiring additional employees/creating additional jobs in micro enterprises

Please ‘X’ and/or describe if relevant

     

Operational level

Local

Regional

National

Please ‘X’ and/or describe if relevant

   

X

Rationale/motivation for the instrument

(please describe)

To facilitate the creation of new enterprises in Luxembourg. This instrument was originally launched in 2005, but has been further developed since and was chosen as an example, because of its close link to the creation of new enterprises and because it is regarded as an example of good practice by the DG Enterprise and Industry.

Purpose and aims for the instrument (please describe)

Providing potential founders of new enterprises with easy access to expert advice on how to start a new business as well as an overview of all the formalities that need to be completed in order to found an enterprise.

Initiator
Please ‘X’

X (Chamber of Commerce)

   

X (Institute Universitaire International Luxembourg and the University of Luxembourg)

Other stakeholders actively involved in implementation (please name them and describe their roles)

All of the above mentioned initiators lead this project.

Target groups        
Please describe the target groups (sector, age, level of education, gender)

This project is generally aimed at all those interested in starting a business, however, expert advice is currently only available to students from the Faculty of Sciences, Technology and Communication of the University of Luxembourg.

Funding        
Please describe the funding of the instrument/programme (national and European sources, budget available)

Detailed information was not available, but the project is likely financed by its initiators.

Activities    
Please describe the activities of the programme or institutional initiative as detailed as possible

It is an online platform developed for potential entrepreneurs. The platform contains information on all the steps necessary to create an enterprise in Luxembourg from how to develop a successful business plan to how to complete the necessary formalities with the government. It even offers ‘Online Coaching’ by experts to potential future entrepreneurs, although this option is currently limited to certain students of the University of Luxembourg.

Results (Effectiveness)      
Please describe the results e.g. number of beneficiaries, advised enterprises

In its first 1.5 years in operation the platform had about 16,000 visitors and around 2,000 users, most of which are business creators.

Challenges in order to reach the objectives e.g. for the organisation offering the instrument, the entrepreneurs (Please describe); and if available how these have been overcome

n/a

Assessments of the effectiveness e.g. investments made in order to reach the objectives of the programme (outcome vs. investment) (Please base this assessment on evaluations when possible)

Although information on the effectiveness of this tool could not be found, it is listed in the DG Enterprise and Industry’s Small Business Act – Database of good practices.

Outcomes (Efficiency)  
Increasing self-employment, growth and employment e.g. number of start-up and/or jobs created etc. (please describe, preferably based on evaluations, otherwise on experts’ assessment)

n/a

Please provide link to evaluation documents if possible

n/a

Part 3: Annex: Update on recent self-employment study

The recent European Employment Observatory Review on self-employment 2010, European Commission, Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities provides insight into support instruments for self-employment. To avoid duplication of this information, we ask you as National Correspondent to omit these measures already covered in your research (Part 2 of this questionnaire), and only update or add any additional details or measures that exceed the information already provided in this report.

Table 8: Additional information on specific instruments to the EEO national report on self-employment:

Title of the instrument

 
Additional information

Table 9: Please add any other comments to the EEO national report on self-employment:

Table 10: Please indicate ‘X’ if you have no additional information to the EEO national report on self-employment:

Please indicate ‘X’ if you have no additional information to provide

X

Commentary

Luxembourg’s government as well as the social partners are quite active in supporting enterprises through a variety of measures in different areas such as for example promoting an entrepreneurial spirit, facilitating access to financing, providing training courses and lowering administrative and regulatory burdens. However, the dominant target groups in this field are SMEs in general and potential future entrepreneurs. Micro enterprises find next to no mention in the analysed government documents and measures specifically aiming at hiring the first employee or additional employees in micro enterprises could not be found. Of the groups under study in this report only the self-employed were the subject of some government measures. Hence, the policy discourse in Luxembourg pertaining to job creation through entrepreneurship appears to make relatively few distinctions concerning the size groups of the enterprises that are being targeted.

Hendrik Olszewski, HERA

References

Chambre de Commerce Luxembourg (2009). Vade-Mecum. Last accessed July 24th 2011, at: http://www.vaccinanticrise.lu/fileadmin/docs/vademecum.pdf

DG Enterprise and Industry (2011). Small Business Act – Database of good practices: VaccinAntiCrise. Last accessed May 30th 2011, at: http://ec.europa.eu/enterprise/policies/sme/best-practices/database/SBA/index.cfm?fuseaction=practice.detail&gp_pk=8290&tr_pk=5955

OECD (2011). OECD Tax database: Employee social security contribution rates and related provisions. Last accessed May 29th 2011, at: http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/12/55/34674393.xls

[10] OECD (2011). OECD Tax database: Employee social security contribution rates and related provisions. Last accessed May 29th 2011, at: http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/12/55/34674393.xls



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