Ordinary General Assembly 2023


On June 12th, the Official Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Belgium and Luxembourg held its Ordinary General Assembly at the Cervantes Institute in Brussels. The event gathered a large number of members and was attended by the Honorary President, the Ambassador of Spain in Belgium, Mr. Alberto Antón Cortés and the Honorary Vice-President, the Economic and Commercial Counsellor, María Palanca.

The event began with a brief speech by the President, Mr. Pablo López-Álvarez, to welcome and thank all the members present and in particular the Ambassador.

He then gave the floor to the Ambassador, who thanked the Chamber for all the work done throughout the year, highlighting the work of the President, the two Vice Presidents, the Secretary General and all the staff of the Chamber. He also thanked the members for their involvement. In addition, he remembered Jose Gracia Barba, nicknamed “Pitu” by his friends and colleagues, and Antonio Corpás, members of the Board of Directors who passed away during the last year, praised their contributions and called for a minute of silence.

Subsequently, and following the Agenda, the Secretary General informed about the activities carried out by the Chamber during the last year, collected in the Chamber’s Activities Report for the year 2022. During the review, she highlighted the activity of the past year as “extraordinary” and emphasised the positive trend in the increase of members; the President pointed out that in the last five years the number of members has increased by 40%.

The report on the accounting situation of the Chamber as at 31 December 2022 was then presented. The Vice-President for Belgium, Abelardo García, took the floor on behalf of the Treasurer and made a detailed analysis of the Balance Sheet and Profit and Loss Account for the year 2022. He pointed out that the income increased by 82% last year and described the financial situation of the Chamber as “extremely good”. In this respect, he emphasised the efficiency ratio of 62% achieved in the economic management of the financial year 2022. The total assets of the Balance Sheet were EUR 2,747,214 and the Profit for the year was EUR 294,784.

The General Assembly approved the Annual Accounts for the financial year 2022 by unanimous vote of those present and represented.

Strategic Plan

Following the Agenda, the Strategic Plan 2023-2026 of the Chamber was then presented, the roadmap that the entity will use to guide its activity in the next three years. The Plan contemplates two new recruitments to incorporate a permanent delegate in Luxembourg and a new worker in Brussels, with the idea of deepening the services offered by the Chamber.

The future of the entity’s physical headquarters is another of the points contemplated in the Strategic Plan, with the decision of whether to maintain the current offices and refurbish them or move the headquarters to another location on the table. The President assured that the summer of 2024 has been set as the deadline for making a decision.

The Strategic Plan also seeks to homogenise the services of the Spanish Chambers abroad integrated in FEDECOM and to enhance communication, among other objectives. The Assembly approved the Strategic Plan unanimously.

The Secretary General announced the names of the members who will complete their term of office, as well as the candidatures received, which, in accordance with the provisions of the statutes, are up for re-election.

This year, due to the limited number of nominations (5 nominations for 5 seats), all candidates were elected to serve as members of the Chamber’s Board of Directors for the next 3 years by popular acclamation.

The new members of the Board of Directors, as well as those revalidating their posts, are:

  • Gonzalo Fernandez Iglesias, Aspro Park (Member)
  • Juan Alfonso Herrero, Mercadona (Member)
  • Álvaro Laorden, personal shareholder (Member)
  • David Luengo, Indra (Member)
  • Carlos Rodríguez, Telefónica (Member)

To close the Assembly, the President took advantage of the end of María Palanca’s honorary Vice-Presidency to thank her for her work and advice during the last five years and invited her to continue participating in the Chamber’s activity in the future.

Palanca assured that “it has been an honour” to be able to collaborate with the Chambe. She again congratulated the Secretary General and the team for the efficiency in the management of the Chamber and for making all this work benefit the Spanish business network in Belgium and Luxembourg.

Finally, Joseba Arriortua took the floor to thank Sergio de Miguel Jessel, former vice-president of the Chamber and a key player in the unification of the delegation with the Chamber in Brussels, for his work over more than ten years.