Support for SMEs

Fiscal and financial support provided to SMEs

Some ASEAN countries have fiscal and/or financial support to help the SMEs in greening their businesses.

This could be SME-focused credit line, credit guarantees, credit support, and/or tax incentives.

Some of these SME-focused incentives are also provided by international organisations from time to time partnering with local institutions.

There are also equity and debt instruments offered in the non-public sector by investment firms and commercial banks.

Gender lens investing is on the rise in ASEAN although focus at the intersection of climate and gender remains nascent.


Transaction Enablers

A “Catalogue” created by governments or associations to make specific transactions possible.

This could be portals to help businesses to make informed green investment, purchases, or contracting decisions such as Product labels, Certifications of female ownership, List of accredited professionals, (auditors, ESCOs).

This also includes climate champions within the business community.


Human capacity development

Staff skills training is important in understanding what is needed for climate change decision making

With more than 3,900 current supporters worldwide, TCFD strives to be the leading framework for managing climate risks and opportunities.

Central banks and regulators in the region have adopted the TCFD-aligned recommendations in developing climate-related reporting requirements and standard.

This trend is expected to increase in ASEAN as a result of regulatory and supply chain push

Some other related trainings such as ESG and sustainability will also provide relevant knowledge needed


Existing support schemes

Public Sector Non-Public Sector
International & Regional











Technical Assistance grants from international organisations

Funds offered from international organisations with local partners (such as banks) which provide finance, business case development for SMEs or women-owned SMEs, to overcome their reluctance to use technologies which they may be unfamiliar with.


Feedback and engagement channels

Organisations which engage women-owned SMEs in a systematic, supportive way. These platforms can be leveraged to provide access to climate information and resources to SMEs, especially women-owned SMEs, support collaboration and knowledge sharing as well as opportunities to capture direct feedback on SMEs’ climate-related needs and solutions.



Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP)

SMEs can engage collectively through trade associations to learn and act on climate issues. Trade associations, such as VASEP, can support SMEs in implementing measures for emissions mitigation and climate adaptation, tailored to the specific local context.

VASEP Overview

Organisation Structure Non-governmental organisation established in 1998, comprising enterprises and authorities in seafood exporting and processing sectors.
Support for SMEs
  • Organising training activities, reaching up to 1,500 people annually across 15-20 topics to support seafood businesses
  • Raising businesses’ awareness of regulations and global markets
  • Providing updated market information through its live portal in Vietnamese
  • Coordinating seminars and conferences, including the annual Vietnam Fisheries International Exhibition, to establish market linkages and international relations

The UK Government’s ASEAN Low Carbon Energy Programme (LCEP) supported VASEP to provide energy efficiency technical assistance to 3 SMEs:

VASEP closely coordinated with LCEP to provide capacity building to its member seafood factories and identified 3 SMEs to receive further technical assistance from the Programme. As a result of the energy audits, capacity building and energy management support, the 3 factories successfully carried out energy efficient measures and achieved the following climate and operational benefits:

  Increased awareness of leadership and key staff on energy management

  Increased operational efficiency through usage of the energy management systems

  Increased cost savings through energy conservation measures and investments into energy efficient appliances


Tracking Progress