Policies for Small Enterprises

Creating the Right Environment for Good Jobs

Release Date: November 1, 2003

Around the world, millions of people work in micro and small enterprises (MSEs), often in unsafe working conditions and receiving low pay and little social protection. As a result, many of these workers live in poverty. This comprehensive book reveals how national policies, laws, and regulations can be used to create more and better jobs in MSEs and combat poverty as well.

The book identifies an array of common problems faced in the sector and provides numerous examples of best practices for the design and implementation of policies and laws to respond to them. Based on studies carried out in Chile, Guinea, Pakistan, Peru, South Africa, Tanzania and Vietnam, it discusses MSE promotion initiatives, taxation and labor, and trade and finance policies. It also outlines the major principles for reform including the importance of communication and transparency and the design of fair, country-specific laws and regulations that take account of existing gender-based inequalities.

The findings presented here have potential for application far beyond the seven countries studied and deserve the attention of policymakers, development practitioners, and researchers everywhere.