Eurochambres 13th Annual Congress was held in Stavanger, Norway, 29 and 30 September on the theme “Entrepreneurial spirit and employment”. The focus was on Europe’s entrepreneurship and jobs, and which tracks to explore in the immediate future. Other issues were finance access and women entrepreneurs. The congress gathered 400 participants.
In a video message to Stavanger Congress, President Barroso recalled that the great innovation in the Lisbon strategy is the entrepreneurial spirit, and that this should be promoted to create more jobs. Mr Barroso considered that Europe needs more people who create start-ups. He felt that employer organisations should be able to use the opportunities provided by the internal market and expressed that he is counting on the Chambers of Commerce and Industry to do so.
The Norwegian foreign minister, Jan Petersen, hoped in his opening remarks that business creation would be facilitated and that young people would be encouraged. He stressed the need for new jobs and new ideas. Christopher Leitl, the outgoing president of Eurochambers, focused on a more optimistic Europe, a dare to take risks and to gain from these risks as opportunities to be seized.
Eurochambres is The Association of European Chambers of Commerce and Industry, and it represents 44 national associations of Chambers of Commerce and Industry, a European network of 2000 regional and local Chambers with over 18 million member enterprises in Europe. Eurochambres forms one of the key pilars of business representation to the European institutions. Its mission is to represent, serve and promote European Chambers of Commerce and Industry. This involves to develop the participation of European Chambers in projects of value to business and to work as a network for enterprises.