Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) or small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are businesses whose personnel numbers fall below certain limits. The abbreviation "SME" is used by international organizations such as the World Bank, the European Union, the United Nations, and the World Trade Organization (WTO).
In any given national economy, SMEs sometimes outnumber large companies by a wide margin and also employ many more people.
For example, Australian SMEs makeup 98% of all Australian businesses, produce one-third of the total GDP and employ 4.7 million people. In Chile, in the commercial year 2014, 98.5% of the firms were classified as SMEs. In Tunisia, the self-employed workers alone account for about 28% of the total non-farm employment, and firms with fewer than 100 employees account for about 62% of total employment. The United States' SMEs generate half of all U.S. jobs, but only 40% of GDP. In 2014, 170,000 American small and medium-sized businesses exported nearly $180 billion worth of goods to TPP countries. Yet while 98 percent of U.S. exporters are small businesses, fewer than 5 percent of all U.S. businesses export goods. That means there is huge untapped potential for small businesses to increase revenues and support jobs by selling U.S. goods and services to 95 percent of the world's consumers who live outside the USA.Developing countries tend to have a larger share of small and medium-sized enterprises. SMEs are also responsible for driving innovation and competition in many economic sectors. Although they create more new jobs than large firms, SMEs also suffer the majority of job destruction/contraction.

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