The capital position and liquidity of small and medium-sized enterprises continues to deteriorate, which has resulted in a further deterioration of the quality of loans to SMEs. The problem is also evident at the EU level, but it is particularly pronounced in Croatia because of the depth and duration of the crisis. It is thus possible that the incentive schemes for small and medium enterprises have not yielded the results visible at the macro level so far for objective reasons. However, it is also possible that different policies and measures could have achieved more. The paper points out that the incentive policies for SMEs are too narrowly focused on the problem of financing. Five key obstacles to the growth and development of SMEs have been identified: capital constraints; knowledge, information and systems; barriers to open market competition; the inappropriate institutional framework and, only in the last place, the problems of access to finance. The paper contains a discussion of possible policies and measures to overcome those barriers and, finally, the issues for public discussion. The latter is also the ultimate goal of the document: to serve as a basis for public debate on the revival of small and medium-sized companies in Croatia.