The €5m exchange scheme offers young businessmen and women the opportunity to shadow an established European entrepreneur before launching their own ventures.
Launched in February last year, Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs has already competed 60 exchanges, but acceptances could climb to 500 by June 2010.
Those who enter the scheme spend any time between one and six months with an entrepreneurial host, and receive financial support to help cover expenses.
Research by the Commission shows that currently only 8 per cent of Europe’s SMEs export goods and services within the EU.
One of the goals of the scheme is to encourage entrepreneurship as well as help business owners make better use of the EU’s internal market.
Although there haven’t yet been many British applicants to the scheme – over half of the applicants come from Italy and Spain – it offers a great chance to learn how to conduct business on the continent.
Long boozy lunches, anyone
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