Students from Erasmus Hogeschool Brussels visit the Chamber

The past 7th of December, more than thirty students from the last year of the hospitality management degree at Erasmus Hogeschool Brussels visited the headquarters of the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg. During the visit, the students could learn more detailed information about how the Chamber work, the existing membership types, which tasks are developed on each department, as well as the different activities and projects developed at the Chamber in both Belgium and Luxembourg. Two good examples of this are the Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs Program, of which the Chamber is local contact point, and the Spanish for business courses that are organized in collaboration with Instituto Cervantes.

Meeting of the Board of Directors of the Chamber

On December 6th, a meeting of the Board of Directors of the Chamber was held at the Meliá Luxembourg hotel.

During the meeting, José Luis Rodríguez Álvarez (BBVA LuxInvest) was appointed as Vice President of the Chamber for a term of three years. In addition, the 2018 budget was presented, and discussions were held, among other topics, on upcoming activities of the entity.

The Chamber’s 2018 diaries are already available

The Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg’s 2018 diary is already available.

We encourage you to pick up yours in our headquarters in Brussels and in the delegation of Luxembourg.

The Diary includes a list of the members organized by activity sector as well as all the information about the services that the Chamber offers to its members.

We thank the advertisers for their collaboration:



The diaspora of Spanish professionals and their contribution to the internationalization of the Spanish economy

The past 28th of November, Leading Brands of Spain Forum, in collaboration with the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg, Marca España and the Embassy of Spain in Belgium, organized in Brussels a meeting called “The diaspora of Spanish professionals and their contribution to the internationalization of the Spanish economy”. A diverse group of Spanish professionals established in the Belgian capital participated in this initiative, which aimed to debate about the asset that the Spanish professionals who are living abroad represented for the internationalization of the economy and the Spanish companies.

After the welcome words by Cecilia Yuste Rojas, Ambassador of Spain in Belgium, and José Luis Bonet, President of the Leading Brands of Spain Forum, the General Manager of the Leading Brands of Spain Forum and moderator of the event, Miguel Otero, introduced the subject and the speakers.

Right after, Enrique Fanjul, member of the Scientific Council of Elcano Royal Institute, took the floor. During his intervention, Fanjul explained that over the past few years, the number of Spanish professional established abroad had increased considerably. These professionals work in Spanish companies, in multinationals, in public organizations of the countries where they are, and in international organizations. He argued that it is necessary to make an effort and establish mechanisms to take advantage of this asset of great value.

Afterwards, some success stories about professional networks abroad were presented.

The first success story was done by Wim den Tuinder, Director of IESE Alumni Association & Institutional Development. During his intervention, Wim explained the expansion process of its alumni network and the different programs of development and expansion that are carried out from IESE.

The next success story was presented by Nicolás García, Director of the “Liga Global Network”. During his intervention, Nicolás talked about the strategy and the goals that are pursued through this initiative, which seeks to consolidate the positioning of LaLiga worldwide.

Then, Juan Rodríguez-Villa, president of the Federation of Spanish Chambers of Commerce in Europe, Africa, Asia and Oceania (FEDECOM), described the importance of FEDECOM to create relations between Spain and other the countries around the world

Finally, a debate took place about the subject matter in which all the attendees could participate. Among the most important subjects, they discussed about the role of women in the business world, the emigration of the young Spanish talent and the role of the Spanish companies in the process of the internationalization of ‘Marca España’.

Companies and institutions from Navarra present in Brussels their activity in the biomedicine sector

The past 21st November 2017, the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg organized in Brussels, in collaboration with the Delegation of the Government of Navarra and the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Navarra, a conference at the Hotel Sofitel Brussels about the business opportunities for collaboration in the biomedicine sector between Navarra and Belgium. During the conference numerous presentations from different representatives of universities, companies and institutions, both from Navarra and Belgium, took place.

Bert Dehandschutter, member of the Board of Directors at the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg, and Manuel Ayerdi, Vice-president for Economic Development of the Government of Navarra, both said a welcome word.

Afterwards, Kathleen D’Hont, policy officer at the Government of Flanders, presented the biomedical sector in this region, highlighting the universities and active companies on this field, and the specialization of different Flemish organizations on this area.

On the other hand, Izaskun Goñi, Director General of Economy Policy at the Government of Navarra, explained the currently existing development areas in Navarra, focusing on health sector. She also presented the “International Plan of Navarra” which aims to increase, by 2020, the exports and the internationalization, as well as the companies from Navarra that usually export, specially to Belgium, but also to France, United Kingdom and Germany.

After that, Henk Joos, Managing Director at Flanders Bio, presented the organization, which is composed by life sciences clusters, and has its headquarters in Flanders. It counts on more than 355 members from 3 different regions in Belgium, and also from adjacent countries, such as the Netherlands. During his presentation, he underlined that Belgium manages the 18% of the European capital in biotechnology, highlighting that the reasons for this success are related to its excellency, the strong funding, the experience and its geographic location in Europe. It is convenient to point out the big concentration of biopharmaceutical institutions and companies existing in Belgium (Janssen Pharmaceutica, Pfizer, GSK vaccines, UCB, Roche Diagnostics, Novartis, Sanofi, Baxter, among others).

Elke Smits, Professor at the Antwerp University Hospital, attended as representative both from this University and from Flanders Bio. She explained the approach of biomedicine in Flanders, showing how the Research Center at the Antwerp Clinic operates, and emphasizing the importance of the correct use of data in order to achieve significant progresses.

She also mentioned the Biobanking and BioMolecular Resources Research Infrastructure, BBMRI, an organization which aims to create and maintain an infrastructure of Belgian biobank.

Begoña Vicente, Head of Business Development at Research Institutes, attended as a representative of the Public university of Navarra (UPNA), presenting the bachelor and masters degrees existing there, highlighting the ones taught in English in their totality, as well as the research activity that makes them outstand as an education center.

Elías Rodriguez-Toral, Director of the Research Management Department at CIMA (Centro de Investigación Médica Aplicada), presented how CIMA works and orientates its activities to the research of new diagnosis and therapeutic products, working together with pharmaceutical companies and other institutions.

Isabel Gil, Scientific Coordinator of NavarraBiomed Biobank and Clara Gahigiro, European Funding Project Manager at the same company, spoke about the Biomedical Research Centre of the Government of Navarra, highlighting the support and collaboration projects at the Spanish biobank network. It takes part of the Spanish Biobank network, an initiative from the Health Center Carlos III, which counts on 52 biobanks.

For her part, Ana Cañada, International Trade Manager at the Navarre Chamber of Commerce and Industry, explained briefly which are the main biomedicine companies in Navarra and the main objectives of each one of them (Cinfa, Palobiofarma, Albyn medical, 3pbiopharmaceuticals, geiser pharma, Lozy’s, Ojer Pharma, Tedcas, Pharmamodelling, making genetics, Innoup farma, eversens, movalsys).

Gert Verreth, Communication Advisor at Essenscia (Belgian Federation of Chemical Industries and for the Life Sciences), emphasized the fact that Belgium is on the world top 10 for pharmaceutical innovation, and the fact that 5 of the 100 essential medicines existing in the world, have been developed in Belgian labs. Thus, after presenting the key Belgian companies for this achievement, he explained the reasons why Belgium is a key country related to bio pharmacy: it is a unique academic and industrial network, it has a strong focus on the innovative research, a highly qualified and productive work power, and it is very well located and provided with excellent logistics infrastructure.

Afterwards, the companies from Navarra attending to the event were introduced. Javier Arnáez, representative of Idifarma, Francisco Fernández representative of Adacen, María Llorente Business Development Manager at Bionanoplus, and lastly, Iranzu Lamberto as Chief Operating Officer at IKan Biotech, did different presentations on behalf of their companies.

Finally, with the aim of turning this event into a productive meeting for both companies and organizations, and in order to create new business relationships, a matchmaking, consisting of B2B meetings between the companies and institutions took place after the presentations

Conference: “Castilla y León: a region to invest in”

Last Tuesday 7th November, the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg organized in collaboration with Junta de Castilla y León and Instituto para la Competitividad Empresarial (ICE) a conference under the topic “Castilla y León: a region to invest in”.

Juan Rodríguez-Villa Matons, President of the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg said a welcome word and thanked the participation of all the attendees.

Afterwards, David Martínez Hornillos, the Economic and Commercial Counselor at the Embassy of Spain in Belgium, provided an overview for foreign investment in Spain, highlighting the most relevant sectors in the economy of the country. He also underlined some examples of foreign companies with active investment projects in Spain.

Later on, Carlos Martín Tobalina, General Director of industry and competitiveness and Vice- President of Economy at the Government of Castilla y León, presented the region and the infrastructures that facilitate its accessibility and its potential investing. He highlighted the most important sectors of the region which are agri-food and viticulture, automotive and aeronautics, pharmaceutical, energy, ICTs, security, logistics and endogenous resources. In addition, he pointed out that the human capital is another strength in this region since there are highly qualified professionals who are specialized in those sectors.

On the other hand, another of the advantages that Castilla y León offers to potential investors is a very favorable work environment. Its main characteristics are: low staff rotation, high stability, low labor conflicts and high labor productivity index. In addition, he pointed out the high quality of life in the autonomous community, highlighting the wide cultural and gastronomic offer. Finally, the speaker wanted to remark all the support that Castilla y León provides to the international investors.

After the speeches, the attendees were able to ask their questions during a space dedicated to networking.

You can check David Martínez Hornillos’ presentation through the following link.
You can check Carlos Martín Tobalina’s presentation through the following link.

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DS Brussels Fashion Days – Spanish Edition

On the 20th, 21st and 22nd October 2017, a new edition of the Brussels Fashion Days took place in Brussels. This is the most important event in the fashion sector held every year in Belgium. This Fashion Days gathered a wide audience in the Belgian capital, offering them a complete program of activities which aimed to promote fashion in Belgium between the sector’s professionals and the end consumers.

In this event’s sixth edition, Spain has been the guest country for the first time. Fashion Shows with renowned designers, emerging designers and fashion schools, pop-up stores, workshops and exhibitions are some of the activities that have taken place during the Fashion days in the most emblematic venues of the capital.

The Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg will be the entitled institution to manage Spanish participation at the Fashion Days. It also counts with the collaboration of the Spanish Embassy in Belgium and Marca España.


On Thursday 19th October, the Spanish Ambassador in Belgium, HE Mrs. Cecilia Yuste Rojas, organized a welcome reception for the Spanish delegation participating in the DS Brussels Fashion Days – Spanish Edition. In this way, the Spanish Embassy thanked the designers and Spanish fashion professionals their collaboration in the promotion of Marca España abroad in such an important sector for the Spanish economy.


On Friday the 20th October at 15.00h, the Town Hall of Brussels organized the opening reception for the DS Brussels Fashion Days – Spanish Edition. During this welcome event, a press conference took place with María Catalán, Secretary General of the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg, the Spanish designer Agatha Ruiz de la Prada, the president of ACME, Modesto Lomba, the Spanish designers Miguel Marinero and Ion Fiz, Calahorra’s mayor Luis Martínez-Portillo and Rafael Díaz, Director General at ESNE.

At the same time, Agatha Ruiz de la Prada was told that she had been awarded the National Fashion Design Award 2017 granted each year by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport.

Later, at 18.00h the official inauguration of the DS Brussels Fashion Days – Spanish Edition took place at Galerie Horta, where the pop- up space was located with the representation of 5 Spanish fashion brands. Socku with their fun and colorful socks, Alfredo Arranz and his handmade decorated silk shawls, Osö Design’s made in Spain clothes, Cache.Toi and their fur capuches and the sustainable fashion from The IOU Project. In addition, in the same space we could also find the exhibition “Fashionable vegetables. Designs of the Catwalk Ciudad de Calahorra (La Rioja)”. This was an exhibition where we can find the most representative dresses from designers such as Alexander McQueen, Balenciaga, Chanel or Elie Saab, but made with vegetables from the vegetable garden from La Rioja. Finally, in Galerie Horta D’icanno and ESNE exhibited a sample of their designs. The inauguration counted on the presence of Agatha Ruiz de la Prada, Miguel Marinero and Modesto Lomba. The mentioned space stayed open during the whole weekend.

During the night, at 21.30h the Opening Fashion Show took place in Galerie Ravenstein with the participation of Spanish and Belgian fashion designers. From the Spanish side, the designs with pure lines created by Eder Aurre shined in a catwalk full of color and finesse. Victor Nouman brought men’s fashion to the catwalk with designs that combine art, architecture and fashion. Adriana Cagigas, alumni at the fashion design school ESNE, presented the collection Timeless from the brand she created herself: Threeones. Débora Velasquez showed her long dresses and D’icanno, her most responsible and solidary designs. All of them maintained high standards during the first Fashion Show in the DS Brussels Fashion Days – Spanish Edition.









During the second day of the DS Brussels Fashion Days – Spanish Edition, several events took place. At 19.00h, the Spanish Chamber organized at the Hotel NH Collection Brussels Grand Sablon, in collaboration with Hispania Brussels, a Fashion Dinner as a tribute to Spanish fashion. The dinner was elaborated by the chef Marcos Morán, owner of a Michelin Star and three Soles Repsol. In addition, the attendees could enjoy Spanish wine offered by Bodegas Yuntero, and they toasted with cava Freixenet.

There were several speeches along the Fashion Dinner. First, Juan Rodríguez Villa, President of the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce delivered welcome remarks and thanked the presence of all the attendees, specially all the designers and fashion entrepreneurs that had traveled to the Belgian capital to celebrate the internationalization of Spanish Fashion. Then, Modesto Lomba, President of ACME (Asociación de Creadores de Moda de España) – association to which belong all designers from the upcoming Fashion Show – took the floor. He thanked the effort from all those professionals that fight day to day for the expansion of Spanish Fashion and help to make our fashion more important and acknowledged abroad.









After that, the president of the Spanish Chamber awarded Agatha Ruiz de la Prada with a distinction for her amazing work in the internationalization of Spanish Fashion. He also congratulated her for receiving the National Award of Fashion Design in Spain. Afterwards, Agatha took the stand and showed her enthusiasm about the awards and showed her happiness because Spanish fashion is more and more well-known in an international level. Finally, Jérémy De Lemos, Director General at the Hotel NH Collection Grand Sablon, said a closing word and showed his happiness because NH was taking part of such an important moment for the Spanish Fashion.

After the Fashion Dinner, the attendees headed to the Great Fashion Show that took place in Galerie Ravenstein. Agatha Ruiz de la Prada was in charge of opening the Fashion Show, filling it with energy and color. Afterwards, Leyre Valiente, presented her collection Chaos, her third collection inspired in the French illustrator Jean Giraud Moebius’ work, with a flawless dress collection. On his side, Ion Fiz added some ethnical touch to the catwalk, and Miguel Marinero was in charge of closing the Spanish participation with artisan prêt-à-porter designs, where leather, fur and paillettes were the main protagonists.


During the last day of the DS Brussels Fashion Days – Spanish Edition, Agatha Ruiz de la Prada, together with Jean Paul Lespagnard took part in a Fashion Talk at Galerie Horta, where both designers shared their perspectives about the fashion universe and the creativity in a comfortable and relaxed environment.

To close this big fashion event, on the afternoon Fashion Show, ESNE participated as the only Spanish fashion design school together with other Belgian fashion schools. Several students and alumni from ESNE showed their designs in the long catwalk at Galerie Ravenstein. The collections belonged to Toni Enríquez, Keka Fidalgo, Delfina Reca, Alejandra Cabrales, Paloma Suarez and Furs Lab ESNE. Victor Gimeno also presented his bags’ collection.


The DS Brussels Fashion Days have come to an end as a big success for the Spanish participants, with a large influx of attendees during all the event and with a very positive evaluation by the audience. The Spanish Chamber thanks all the Spanish participants for their time, dedication and contribution to the event’s success. The Chamber also wants to thank the sponsors ACME, ESNE and NH Collection, as well as the collaborators’ Marca España, AirEuropa, Hispania, Freixenet, UPS and Bodegas Yuntero (and their distributor Vin Munnen) for making possible the Spanish participation on the DS Brussels Fashion Days.

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The Embassy of Spain in Luxembourg celebrates the National Holiday

Past October 11th, the Embassy of Spain in Luxembourg celebrated the National Holiday. The reception, which took place in the Cercle Cité of Luxembourg, was sponsored by the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg, Banca March, Santander Consumer Bank, Luxair, BBVA LuxInvest, PwC and Bankinter. The event was attended by the Prime Minister of Luxembourg, Xavier Bettel, among other local authorities, as well as entrepreneurs, Spanish representatives of the EU institutions and many members of the Chamber.

The Ambassador of Spain in Luxembourg, his Excellency Mr.Carlos María de Lojendio y Pardo Manuel de Villena, thanked the attendees their participation in the National Holiday, and the Chamber and sponsor companies in the organization of the act.

Juan Rodríguez-Villa Matons, President of the Chamber, attended the reception with other members of the Board of Directors.

The Embassy of Spain in Luxembourg and the Chamber, thank their collaboration to the partners:

The Embassy of Spain in Belgium celebrates the National Holiday

Last October 12th, the Embassy of Spain in Belgium organized a reception at Palais des Beaux-Arts with the aim of celebrating the Spanish National Holiday.

The act, was organized in collaboration with the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg, and some of its members: Indra, LaLiga, Interparking, BBVA, Everis, Iberdrola and Gómez-Acebo & Pombo. Additionally, the offices of Spanish Autonomous Communities contributed to the success of the event with different products and typical wines of various regions.

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

The Ambassador of Spain in Belgium, her Excellency Mrs. Cecilia Yuste Rojas, thanked the attendees their participation in the National Holiday, and the collaboration of the Chamber in the organization of the event, as well as the different partners.

Juan Rodríguez-Villa Matons, President of the Chamber, attended the reception with other members of the Board of Directors and the Secretary General.