1945

The COVID-19 pandemic has led governments to shut businesses, impose quarantines, and restrict mobility and social contact to contain the spread of the coronavirus. These necessary actions have brought economies of the world to a standstill. Businesses are suffering a loss of revenues, and financial commitments to suppliers, employees, lenders and investors are depleting their financial reserves. Reduced earnings expectations have weakened the outlooks for interest coverage and profitability. Micro-, small and medium enterprises represent over 90 per cent of companies in the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe region and they generate over half of the region’s collective gross domestic product. These enterprises are among the worst hit financially and economic recovery depends on their resilience. Those companies that survive will be a driving force for post-COVID-19 recovery and building back better. Enterprises that deliver energy-efficient products and services and provide renewable energy equipment will be essential for a pivot to sustainability. This publication assesses the business environment that MSME in clean energy face as a result of the pandemic. It presents examples of best practices related to crisis response and post-crisis recovery and offers practical measures to help businesses access markets, financing, and advanced technologies. The publication provides recommendations for policy guidelines to help countries move beyond the COVID-19 pandemic.

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