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CLAUSE 1 Promotion of Business Innovation and Start-Ups of SMEs

(Promotion of Business Innovation)

Article 12:In order to promote business innovation at SMEs, the State shall promote research and development related to technologies for developing new products and services; promote the introduction of plants and equipment to substantially improve the efficiency of production and sale of products; promote the introduction of new methods of business management for integrated control of product development, production, transportation and sale; and take any other necessary measures.

(Promotion of Start-Ups)

Article 13:In order to promote start-ups of SMEs, the State shall provide information on and improve training for start-ups, facilitate the financing of start-up expenses, and take any other necessary measures, and shall also endeavor to increase public interest in and understanding of the importance and need for start-ups.

(Promotion of Creative Business Activity)

Article 14:In order to promote the creative business activities of SMEs, the State shall promote research and development concerning remarkably original techniques related to the production or sale of products or provision of services, develop systems to facilitate the acquisition of the necessary human resources and financing through such means as shares and corporate bonds, and take any other necessary measures.

CLAUSE 2 Strengthening of Business Fundamentals of SMEs

(Acquisition of Business Resources)

Article 15:In order to contribute to the acquisition of the necessary business resources to improve business methods and techniques and otherwise strengthen the business fundamentals of SMEs, the State shall take the following measures and any other necessary measures:

(1)In order to encourage the introduction of plants and equipment by SMEs, the State shall promote the installation and maintenance of plants and equipment furnished for use in business by SMEs;

(2)In order to encourage the improvement of SMEs' technologies, the State shall promote technological research and development undertaken by SMEs; encourage the active participation of SMEs in technological research and development undertaken by the State; promote cooperation between SMEs and the State, independent administrative institutions, prefectural public test and research institutes and universities; and develop programs to train engineers and technicians;

(3)In order to promote the increase of knowledge that is of use in the business activities of SMEs, the State shall develop training programs for business managers and promote the provision of information contributing to the development of new fields of business and other information.

2.In addition to the measures specified in the preceding Subsection, the State shall develop systems to help SMEs acquire business resources by such methods as providing information and advice as required by SMEs.

(Promotion of Exchanges, Business Relationships and Cooperatives)

Article 16:In order to encourage SMEs to complement each other's business resources, the State shall encourage exchanges and business relationships among SMEs, develop organizations for furthering business cooperatives among SMEs, subsidize projects undertaken jointly by SMEs, and take any other necessary measures.

(Vitalization of Industrial Agglomeration)

Article 17:The State shall take the necessary measures to vitalize industrial agglomeration in areas deemed natural, economic or social units where a substantial number of SMEs associate organically in the same category of business or closely related categories of business.

(Vitalization of Commercial Zones)

Article 18:In order to vitalize commercial zones such as shopping districts where a substantial number of small and medium retailers or small and medium service providers engage in business, the State shall develop facilities to help improve convenience for local residents such as customers, develop joint stores, and take any other necessary measures.

(Measures Concerning Labor)

Article 19:The State shall take the necessary measures to help further proper labor relations and improve the welfare of employees in SMEs, and shall develop vocational training and employment service programs and take any other necessary measures to help SMEs acquire the labor force they require.

(Improving Fairness of Transactions)

Article 20:In order to improve the fairness of transactions involving SMEs, the State shall prevent overdue payment of subcontracting fees, promote clarification of the terms and conditions of business, and take any other necessary measures.

(Expansion of Opportunities to Receive Orders from the State, etc.)

Article 21:In order to contributing to the increase in demand for the goods and services provided by SMEs, the State shall expand opportunities for SMEs to receive orders for goods and services from the State, etc., and take any other necessary measures.

CLAUSE 3 Smoothing Adaptation to Changes in the Economic or Social Environment

Article 22:Where the business activities of a substantial number of SMEs in the same region or the same category of business are or may be impeded as a result of marked changes in the economic or social environments, such as in the structure of trade or in the conditions of supply of raw materials, the State shall take measures to promote the business stability of SMEs, and to facilitate business conversion by SMEs, and take any other necessary measures.

2.The State shall develop systems to prevent unfair impingement on the interests of SMEs resulting from the business activities of parties other than SMEs, so as to promote the business stability of SMEs, and take any other necessary measures.

3.In order to prevent the occurrence of events such as the bankruptcy of an SME resulting from the bankruptcy of its business connections, the State shall develop mutual relief systems for SMEs and take any other necessary measures.

4.In order to facilitate the restructuring or closure of SMEs, the State shall develop business recovery systems, and mutual relief systems for small enterprises, and take any other necessary measures.

5.In taking such measures as stipulated in Subsection 1 and the preceding Subsection, the State shall show due consideration for facilitating the employment of employees of SMEs.

CLAUSE 4 Facilitation of Financing and Enhancement of Equity Capital

(Facilitation of Financing)

Article 23:In order to facilitate the financing of SMEs, the State shall strengthen the functions of governmental financial institutions, develop a credit insurance system, foster proper lending to SMEs by private-sector financial institutions, and take any other necessary measures.

(Enhancement of Equity Capital)

Article 24:In order to enhance the equity capital of SMEs and help strengthen the business fundamentals thereof, the State shall develop systems for facilitating investment in SMEs, make the tax burden fairer, and take any other necessary measures.

 

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