The Chamber’s Yearbook 2020 is already available

The Yearbook 2020 of the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce of Spain in Belgium and Luxembourg is already available.

All members will receive a copy in the next few weeks by mail.

You can also read it through the Intranet by clicking on this link.

This publication includes information about the available services to our members, the report of the activities organized by the Chamber during 2019, a description of the employment and entrepreneurship programs in which we are involved, as well as a directory of members by activity sector.

The Chamber wants to thank the support of all the member companies, which allow us to continue improving and responding to the needs of our members.

The Yearbook is available in English and Spanish.

In addition, we would like to thank the advertisers their collaboration in the Yearbook 2020, which have helped funding this publication:

                   

 

Infoday: “Discover the Executive Programs of the IEE-ULB”

The Official Chamber of Commerce of Spain in Belgium and Luxembourg and the IEE (Institut d’études européennes associated with the Université libre de Bruxelles), have signed a collaboration agreement through which the members of the Chamber can benefit from special rates in the courses and modules of the Executive Programmes of the Institute.

The last February 20th, an Infoday was organized at the Chamber´s facilities, with individualized meetings, in which attendees could answer their questions about the Executive Programs with two IEE representatives.

The Institut d’études européennes of the ULB has more than fifty years of history. More than 7500 students have passed through it, including commissioners, ambassadors or politicians and it has positioned itself today as a benchmark to improve knowledge in European affairs and strengthen the network of contacts.

This is an executive academic program in English designed for professionals that seeking flexible training to deepen their knowledge in European affairs. The participants can choose to follow the full program or do their training on demand with individual classes or modules. Here you can consult the agenda.

 

In collaboration with:

11/24th-25th Workshop on “Erasmus+ KA2 Project: Ready to get funded”

On November 24th and 25th, the Official Chamber of Commerce of Spain in Belgium and Luxembourg will organize in Brussels a workshop on “Erasmus+ KA2 Project: Ready to get funded”, held by the business developer at CWC Consulting and EU project writer, Paloma Cantero, member of the EmprendeBeLux program.

The workshop will enable professionals to better comprehend the Erasmus+ program and the different funding opportunities within it. Specifically, the training will focus on the Key Action 2 and will consist of reviewing from a practical perspective the whole project application cycle: from getting an IOD number till all tips, tricks and best practices to successfully draft and submit a project proposal.

This workshop will be divided in two days, with a duration of 4 hours each.
You can check the full program of the course here.

To register for the training, fill out the form below.

The Chamber collaborates with the training sessions of the program «Diputación Europa»

On the 30th of January, the Chamber organized a training session for the students of the program “Diputación Europa”, an internship program for future project managers of the province of Cáceres.

The session was focused on “Stakeholders engagement, lobby, and monitoring of European action”. During the session, the fourteen participants of the program had the opportunity to learn the importance to promote stakeholders’ participation in their projects.

In addition, during the second part of the training, Francisco Ferrera, a government affairs consultant of our member company Politics Matters, presented his experience in political and regulatory influence at the European level.

Using case studies, the participants experienced how to become a project manager or a lobbyist.

The Secretary General of the Chamber attends the Christmas Gala of the association Puntos de Encuentro en Bruselas ASBL

On December 12th, the association Puntos de Encuentro en Bruselas ASBL celebrated their annual Christmas Gala. The objective of this association is to develop activities aimed at Spanish-speaking senior citizens through different institutions in Brussels. These activities are mainly focused on promoting the maintenance, stimulus and the development of personal and social abilities of senior people, alongside the reinforcement of their self-esteem.

The event was attended by members of the association, the Spanish Consul in Belgium, Mr. Ignacio Escobar Guerrero, the Work and Social Security Counsellor, Ms. Concepción Gutiérrez del Castillo, representatives of multiple representation offices of Autonomous Communities in Brussels and the Secretary General of the Chamber, María Catalán, amongst other guests.

More information about Puntos de Encuentro en Bruselas ASBL HERE.

The Embassy of Spain in Belgium celebrates the National Holiday

On October 9th, the Embassy of Spain in Belgium organized a reception at the Palais des Académies of Brussels on the occasion of the celebration of the National Holiday.

The reception was attended by local authorities, diplomats, businessmen, European officials and representatives of Spanish public institutions, among other personalities.

H.E. Ambassador of Spain in Belgium Beatriz Larrotcha Palma thanked the attendees for their participation in the National Holiday and highlighted bilateral relations in tourism, business and institutional between Belgium and Spain. The Permanent Representative to NATO, H.E. Ambassador Miguel Ángel Fernández Palacios, also presided the reception.

Both thanked the companies and sponsoring institutions for their collaboration in organizing the event, which was held in collaboration with the Official Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg, was sponsored by our associated enterprises Everis, Iberdrola, Indra, Interparking, LaLiga, GAP, BBVA, Santander Consumer Bank, Hispania Brussels and Quality Media.

The offices of the Autonomous Communities in Brussels also contributed to the success of the reception thanks to the contribution of products and typical wines of each region.

19/09 III Meeting with Spanish entrepreneurs in Belgium

Third meeting with Spanish entrepreneurs in Belgium

On 19 September, the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg organized the third meeting between Spanish entrepreneurs in Brussels, at the offices of Language Studies International, a company member of the Chamber.

On this occasion, the meeting was focused on the training grants available for entrepreneurs in Brussels region. The attendees discovered in detail how to access to these training grants, in particular to language courses.

One of the main obstacles for foreign entrepreneurs in Brussels is the bilingualism of the region. It is estimated that those who know French or Dutch are more likely to succeed when implementing their business in the city.

Additionally, participants had the opportunity to interact with other entrepreneurs and exchange contacts and experiences around this topic.

The Chamber took the opportunity to present the new website of EmprendeBelux, a programme aimed at supporting Spanish entrepreneurs in the country and designed to accompany them in launching their project and/or consolidating their businesses.

Programme sponsored by:

The Chamber, new member of the EURES network in Belgium

Last June, the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg was selected as a new member of the EURES network in Belgium for the Brussels and Wallonia regions.

EURES is a cooperation network designed to facilitate the free movement of workers within the EU 28 countries plus Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway. Employment agencies, unions and business organizations are part of this network.  Likewise, EURES provides its services through the portal and through a human network of around 1.000 advisers that are in daily contact with jobseekers and employers across Europe.

Since 2014, the Chamber has supported the Spanish residents of the BeLux in search of employment and the Belgian and Luxembourgish companies in search of personnel through its employment platform, initially called Programa Jóvenes; and currently EmpleoBelux.

With this recognition, the Chamber intends to continue supporting both jobseekers and companies and, therefore, will provide support services directly to jobseekers and employers in terms of intra-European contracting and contracting opportunities.

The aircraft carrier Juan Carlos I stops over at the Port of Zeebrugge

 

The President of the Chamber, Juan Rodríguez-Villa Matons, participated the last June 24 at the reception organized by the Embassy of Spain in Belgium on the occasion of the stopover at the Port of Zeebrugge of the aircraft carrier Juan Carlos I of the Spanish Navy.

The event was chaired by the Ambassador of Spain in Belgium, Beatriz Larrotcha Palma, and the Commander of the aircraft carrier, and had the participation of civil and military authorities.

Ten Belgian political representatives present their proposals for the country in the #Yes2Belgium Election Debate

Last April 3 took place the debate about the Belgian elections “#Yes2Belgium Election Debate” at the ING´s Manix Auditorium in Brussels. This debate was supported by 12 foreign chambers of commerce in Belgium and is part of their objective to involve their member companies in the upcoming federal, regional and European elections that will take place on May 26.

The event featured the participation of prominent personalities from 10 different parties that shared their vision and solutions to the problems that foreign companies identify as a priority; mobility, tax system and competitiveness, labour market and governance.

 

Mobility

The main topic for discussion was about the possibility to involve the private sector in the management of the Belgian public transports.

Even though there was not a consensus on this issue, they agreed that climate change, efficiency in transport and deficient infrastructure are still some of the key problems to tackle. The digitalization and the new transport models such as the autonomous cars were presented as new opportunities to these problems.

 

Labour market

The imbalance between the increasing demand of qualified workers and the rise of unemployment among less qualified candidates concentrated an important part of the political proposals that presented the training adapted to the market’s needs as main solution.

The labour costs remain still a key problem for the companies based in the country. Some of the candidates suggested to adapt the labour costs to the productivity and to move towards an adequate balance between labour flexibility and a solid social security system.

 

Tax system

The tax system assumed by the companies its perceived as a disadvantage when it comes to positioning Belgium as an attractive country from a tax perspective.

Different candidates agreed that the answer can not be national but European, to avoid the fiscal dumping among member states. They also presented different measures to attract investment in different sectors such as renewable energy and new technologies.

 

Governance

The participants agreed that the inefficiency as regards to governance is not linked to the system itself but rather on the necessity to improve the collaboration between the different political parties to reach agreements on key national political issues.

Different candidates presented the possibility to refederalize certain competences on key topics that require a national answer to avoid inefficiencies.

 

The different political representatives converged on the importance of the foreign investment in the country and the need to generate an attractive framework to foreign companies. The different subjects discussed were considered as crucial to improve the competitiveness of the country and to continue positioning Belgium as a lead country to attract capital and talent.