International programme boosts business opportunities for Wakefield businesses

​Date: 24/10/2016

Ref: PR8379

Wakefield Council is taking part in an innovative programme aimed at increasing networking and collaboration opportunities for Wakefield businesses, boosting exports and protecting and growing jobs and business across the district.

The INTERREG Compete In programme aims to build new relations and exchanges among key business development and support organisations from countries across the world.

The programme will build on Wakefield's international relations and alliances by strengthening and improving regional policies on internationalisation of global territories. Internationalisation means the development of a product in such a way that it will meet the needs of users in many countries or can be easily adapted to do so.

It will use a new approach to support  small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and  the region's engagement in international markets. It will engage with local stakeholder groups, with the long term aim of developing new markets and increasing export activity through development of best practices guidelines.

Wakefield's main role in the Compete In programme will be to lead on the development of best practice examples from all partner countries. This will see it capturing experiences from a wide range of local service groups from each area in the programme, and will include information about bad experiences, practices and mistakes. These best practice studies can then easily be adapted to specific local languages and cultures, across all partners.

Cllr Peter Box. CBE, Leader of Wakefield Council, said: "Wakefield is the only British city involved in this major European programme and INTERREG provides a number of significant opportunities for both the Council and wider District, providing best practice information and contacts for Wakefield businesses, and supporting the Council's objectives of delivering Good Growth in Wakefield through knowledge transfer from partner cities and companies.'"

The lead partner on the programme is the Municipality of Reggio Emilia- Italy, with other partners, IVACE- Valencia Entrepreneurship and Competitiveness Institute- Spain, Upper Silesian Agency for Entrepreneurship and Development – Poland, Wielkopolska Region with the seat of the Marshall Office of the Wielkopolska Region in Poznan- Poland, Wakefield Metropolitan District Council – United Kingdom, Municipality of Gӓvle – Sweden, ERVET- Economic Development Agency of Emilia Romagna Region – Italy

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