SMEs play vital roles in the economic development of all countries,
especially in stimulating productivity and industrial growth, and APO
members are no exceptions. In addition to their significant contributions to
GDP, SMEs provide 60% or more of the jobs in the region, making them a
major source of employment opportunities for an expanding labor force
while addressing the need for more inclusive growth. However, to continue
fulfilling their critical roles in growth and development, SMEs must
embrace technology and innovation. This will lead to sustained productivity
performance in the current volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous
environment. In this report, “innovation” refers to the development,
deployment, and economic utilization of new products, processes, and
services that can act as driving forces of future SME growth and expansion.