MERCADONA receives the Company of the Year Award from FEDECOM

The Federation of Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce in Europe, Africa, Asia and Oceania (FEDECOM), presented last October 7 in Lisbon its Company of the Year Award to MERCADONA. FEDECOM distinguishes every year with this recognition a Spanish company that stands out for its commercial and economic activity in one of the member countries of the Federation.

The award ceremony took place in the Sala do Arquivo da Câmara Municipal de Lisboa and was attended by the presidents of the main business associations of Portugal as well as the Economic and Commercial Counselor of the Embassy of Spain in Portugal, Pedro Moriyon. The award was given by Mr. Eurico Brilhante Dias, Secretary of State for Internationalization of Portugal and, was received by Elena Aldana Prize, Director of External Relations in Portugal and European Affairs of MERCADONA.

MERCADONA closed the year of 2018 with 1,636 stores, 85,800 employees in Spain, a turnover of 24,305 million euros and an investment of 1,504 million euros. It also has an economic impact on the Spanish economy equivalent to 1.9% of GDP and is responsible for 630,000 direct and indirect jobs.

In July 2019, the company opened its first supermarkets in Portugal, this opening of the supermarket chain abroad, entailed its first internationalization project. The company already employs 1,100 Portuguese workers. Today, the company has already opened 5 stores of the 10 planned for 2019. The opening of the stores, the offices in Porto and Lisbon, the Logistics Block in Póvoa de Varzim and the Coinnovation Center in Matosinhos, represent an approximate global investment of 260 million euros, since its announced entry into the Portuguese country in 2016.

Eduardo Barrachina, president of FEDECOM, said: “In a world marked by political, economic and social uncertainties, the international expansion of MERCADONA becomes a good reference that reflects the adaptability of our companies.”

For her part, Elena Aldana, Director of External Relations of Portugal and European Affairs, commented: “We thank to FEDECOM for the recognition given to Mercadona in this important year for us, in which the company has developed its first internationalization project. This award is a result from the effort of all of us who form Mercadona. Only in this way it is possible to create a great company with a great Model, just as Mercadona is.”

Juan Rodriguez-Villa Matons and Maria Catalán, President and Secretary General, respectively, of the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg, attended the event.

General Assembly of FEDECOM

The Federation of Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce in Europe, Africa, Asia and Oceania (FEDECOM) held its General Assembly on October 8 in Lisbon.

The meeting took place in the facilities of the Portuguese-Spanish Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCILE) and counted with the presence of the Presidents of the Chambers in Portugal, United Kingdom, Belgium and Luxembourg, Germany and France, as well as the Secretary-General of the Chamber of Casablanca. The representatives of the rest of associated Chambers attended the meeting through video call.

Throughout the meeting, the beginning of the process of liquidation of the federation in Belgium and the opening of a new association with headquarters in Spain were decided.

The President of FEDECOM, Eduardo Barrachina, presented the medium-term strategic plan for the federation and proposed the production of the “FEDECOM Report”. During the session, among other subjects, the participants debated about the FEDECOM Award 2020 and the proposed candidates.

Juan Rodríguez-Villa Matons and Pablo López Álvarez, reelected respectively President and Vice President of the Chamber

The Board of Directors of the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg, in their meeting organized on September 26th in Brussels, reelected unanimously Juan Rodríguez-Villa Matons and Pablo López Álvarez as President and Vice President of the entity, respectively, for a period of three years.

The President thanked the trust of the Board and considered that the achievements of the Chamber are the result of the teamwork between this organization and the Secretary General. The renovation of the President and Vice President, he added, responds to the wish of continuating with the work carried out during the last years that has led to an important growth of the Chamber, both in terms of activities and services and member companies (currently 242).

The Vice President, during his intervention, reiterated his commitment to, together with the President and the Board of Directors, keep boosting the Chamber as a key platform in BeLux for Spanish companies and in the dialogue with European institutions.

During the meeting, it was also presented the report of activities of the Chamber during the last months and the program for upcoming events.


Kick-off meeting of the financial Commission of the Chamber in Luxembourg

Last 6th June, the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg organized the kick-off meeting of the Financial Commission in the offices of EY in Luxembourg.

Twenty partner companies from the Chamber participated in the meeting with activity related to the financial sector.

With this working group, the Chamber aims to create a space for opinion and debate on economic and financial issues where professionals working in companies related to the provision of financial services, can share experiences, establish collaborations and exchange information about the sector trends.

During the meeting, the objectives of the Commission were discussed, as well as the internal functioning and the proposal of events.

In the coming weeks, the Chamber will present a project of activities and the Commission’s strategy in the medium term.

“Connecting you with the World of Finance” Seminar, organized in Madrid with the participation of Pierre Gramegna

The Vice-president of the Chamber, José Luis Rodríguez Álvarez, and the Secretary General, María Catalán, participated in the seminar “Connecting you with the world of finance” organized the 4th June in Madrid by Luxembourg for Finance.

The seminar was attended by Pierre Gramegna, Minister of Finance of Luxembourg, who presented his vision regarding Brexit, the challenges facing Europe and the respective positioning of the Grand Duchy.

Nicolas Mackel, CEO of Luxembourg for Finance,  and representatives from lhoFT, Luxembourg Green Exchange and Fondation de Luxembourg also took part in the seminar. They presented, from different points of view, the opportunities offered by the Luxembourg financial sector.

Thereafter, there were several discussion panels on wealth management, life insurance, alternative investments and private assets, among other topics.

The seminar had a wide audience mainly specialized in the financial sector.

Meeting of the Board of Directors

On April 16, a meeting of the Board of Directors of the Chamber took place in Brussels.

During the meeting, the appointment of Sophie Leconte as member of the Board of Directors on behalf Everis Belgium was confirmed, replacing Óscar Abril.

Hereafter, the President informed about the recent meetings of the Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce Abroad held in Madrid, and the change on FEDECOM´s presidency.

To conclude, the Secretary General presented the upcoming activities of the Chamber program, highlighting the Spain Means Innovation program and the events organized in the framework of the “Business Circle” Tribune.

The Chamber, new member of the Paperjam Club

The Chamber has formalized its subscription to Paperjam Club, Luxembourg’s largest business club. With more than 1,000 corporate members, Paperjam Club organizes annually more than 250 events and activities focused on the promotion of networking and on business creation among its members.

With this subscription, the Chamber aims to expand its network of contacts in the Grand Duchy and facilitate the access and visibility of the Chamber’s members before a wider professional audience through the activities organized by the Club.

The Secretary of State for Trade thanks the Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce Abroad for their work

The Secretary of State for Trade, Xiana Méndez, has offered all the support of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism to the Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce Abroad. At the closing of the meeting that the CAMACOES have held for two days in Madrid, Xiana Méndez highlighted the work of these Chambers: “You are private institutions, you respond to your members and you design your services to offer them exactly what they need. I would like to thank you for your dedication and work, which is common to the objectives of the Secretary of State for Trade: the defence of Spain’s interests and the improvement of bilateral relations”.

The President of the Spanish Chamber of Commerce, José Luis Bonet, has also taken part, underlining the links between the 41 Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce Abroad and the 85 territorial Chambers of Commerce, and encouraged to continue strengthening this collaboration. “Spain has the opportunity to run a lot and is doing so, and meetings like this one are vital to achieve it. Bonet congratulated the presidents of FECECA, the Federation that groups the Chambers of Commerce in the American continent, Brian Dunning, and Eduardo Barrachina, the new head of FEDECOM, which groups the European, Asian and African Chambers, showing his support to the request of holding the Assemblies of CAMACOES once a year instead of biennially as it has been done until now.

Source: Spanish Chamber of Commerce

The Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce Abroad meet in Madrid

On March 26, the biennial meeting of the network of Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce Abroad (network CAMACOES) took place.

The Spanish Chamber of Commerce hosted this meeting, where its Director General, Inmaculada Riera, highlighted the importance of the role played by the Chambers Abroad to strengthen links, economic connections and bilateral relations between Spain and the countries where they operate.

At the opening day, the Secretary General of the Chamber of Spain, Adolfo Diaz-Ambrona, declared that the aim of this meeting was “to strengthen the coordination of the network of Chambers, and to share the advantages of their respective systems of membership and of their good practices”.

Enrique Fanjul, Deputy General Director for the Internationalisation Strategy of the Ministry of Industry, also responsible for the coordination of the Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce Abroad, also took part in the conference. He underlined the “clear interest of Spanish companies in promoting the Chambers of Commerce Abroad and in belonging to them”. Fanjul also highlighted the dynamism of the network of Chambers Abroad “as demonstrated by the creation of the Chambers of Tunisia, Japan, Malta, United Arab Emirates, Qatar and South Korea: six new Chambers in 2 years”, he said. The Deputy Director General of the Internationalisation Strategy also emphasised that “the Chambers Abroad have been created and continue working by the initiative of companies and have been very important in the process of internationalisation of Spanish companies.”

The meeting was followed by a working day where representatives of the territorial Chambers and the 42 Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce abroad took part.

Source: Spanish Chamber of Commerce

Ordinary General Assembly of FEDECOM

The Federation of Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce in Europe, Africa, Asia and Oceania (FEDECOM) held its Ordinary General Assembly last March 26th in Madrid.

The meeting took place in the facilities of the Spanish Chamber of Commerce and was attended by representatives of the 19 member Chambers.

During the meeting, the balance of last year’s activities and the state of the accounts were presented. Also, the adhesion to the Federation of the Chambers in Japan, Arab Emirates, Qatar, Tunisia and Malta was presented, given that they have recently been recognised by the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism. The Chamber in South Korea, in the process of recognition, also participated in the meeting.

Subsequently, the General Assembly unanimously appointed Eduardo Barrachina, President of the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in the United Kingdom, as new President of FEDECOM.

The President said that “a medium-term strategy will be agreed to improve coordination and will allow us to set clear and realistic objectives”. Among other initiatives, the new President plans to collaborate actively with the Spanish Chamber of Commerce and the Secretary of State of Global Spain.

The Assembly recognized Juan Rodriguez-Villa Matons for the work developed at the head of the federation during the last years. His management has been fundamental to establish a link between the foreign network and the Spanish Chamber of Commerce.

The outgoing president expressed his support to Barrachina, as well as his complete disposition to continue collaborating in favor of the network of Official Spanish Chambers of Commerce abroad.