Society for the development of Burgos (SODEBUR) and European Business and Innovation Centre (CEEI Burgos) participate as partners in the Interreg Europe project INTER VENTURES with entities from Hungary, Italy, Poland and Lithuania.

INTER VENTURES project started in August 2019 and will end in January 2023. The overall goal is to promote the internationalization of small and medium-sized businesses by improving municipal policy documents and the support mechanism for business.

During INTER VENTURES project’s implementation in the province of Burgos (Spain), both partners have worked within the framework of the policy instrument named “Strategic Plan for the province of Burgos 2021-2025”. SODEBUR is also the body responsible for its management. The main objective of this Plan is the definition of strategic actions based on the ideas and challenges for the future in the short and medium term for rural development in the province of Burgos.

Thanks to the participation in INTER VENTURES project, Spanish partners – together with the established Regional Stakeholders Group at the local level – had the opportunity to know different examples of good practices; knowledge and information used to draft the Action Plan to promote the internationalisation of rural SMEs in the province of Burgos.

Thus, according to the needs previously identified in the area, companies situated in the rural areas of the province of Burgos are requiring new ways of support to improve their internationalisation processes. On these grounds, and based on the knowledge transferred within INTER VENTURES project, this document includes two actions to solve this issue. Thus, this Action Plan is aiming at promoting the internationalisation of rural companies under the perspective of the current economic situation due to the pandemic COVID-19, with special attention to providing appropriate financial schemes as well as dedicated training programmes.

1. Review, improve and proposal of existing and new training programmes on internationalisation aiming at Burgos rural SMEs.

To the Burgos Situation Analysis report – drafted during phase 1 of INTER VENTURES project’s implementation, there is a specific need for human resources with sufficient qualifications and training to carry out internationalisation-related tasks. Thus, the main goal of this action is to offer a wide range of tailor-made training opportunities focused on internationalisation. It will aim at SMEs located and operating in Burgos province that already started the internationalisation processes or will be expecting to do it in the short run.

2. Review and improvement of available financial instruments to promote internationalisation among rural companies in the province of Burgos.

This action aims to improve the availability of financial lines (specially dedicated to rural companies) to promote and facilitate internationalisation.

On these grounds, and thanks to the participation in INTER VENTURES project, SODEBUR has allocated almost EUR 11,000 (the year 2022 own budget) to restart the PROGRAMME “DIGITAL XPANDE” in the province of Burgos. This initiative is mostly co-financing with ERDF which will mean a global investment of around EUR 59,000 to work on the improvement of internationalisation processes in the province of Burgos during this year.

This collaboration has been closed with the signature of an agreement between SODEBUR and the Chamber of Commerce of Burgos – also a member of INTER VENTURES Regional Stakeholders Group in the territory – during 2022.

This new programme will let 7 rural companies work in the two lines established in the Action Plan: receiving training and support (diagnosis), on the one hand, and obtaining funds to work on possible improvements, on the other.