Investing in Flanders
Top region that gives investors the red-carpet treatment
Flanders is a region at the heart of European purchasing power. With a surface area of 13,522 km² and more six million inhabitants, it is one of the wealthiest regions in Europe. The official language of Flanders is Dutch, and the region’s capital is Brussels.
Flanders has more than 530,000 businesses, with local and foreign companies not only enjoying many federal fiscal benefits, but also qualifying for many fiscal incentives, support measures and various allowances from the Flemish Region.
Flanders also helps companies in areas including:
- identification of the best possible business site;
- staff recruitment and training;
- logistics and environment;
- research and development.
You can find comprehensive information about investing or starting up a business in Flanders on the website www.investinflanders.be.
A flexible knowledge economy with unique logistical assets
The Flemish are internationally prized for their multilingualism – precisely the reason why many international headquarters are sited in Flanders and the region acts as a second home for many expats. Moreover, the Flemish workforce has the following key assets: a high level of education and training, loyalty, productivity, flexibility and entrepreneurialism.
The main sectors in the Flemish economy are:
These blossoming sectors are partly driven by Flanders’ internationally renowned strategic research centres:
- IMEC (nano-electronics and nano-technology);
- VIB (biotechnology);
- VITO (energy, environmental and materials technology and earth observation);
- IBBT (ICT and broadband).
In addition, the high concentration of knowledge clusters facilitates innovation by networks between companies and knowledge institutions; they range from automotive, digital processing and mechatronics clusters and graphic communication and multimedia clusters to food and logistics.
Flanders has a unique location in the heart of the European road and rail network, with economic centres such as Paris, Cologne, Frankfurt and Amsterdam less than 300 km away.
Logistically the region also has excellent access to the rest of the world, thanks to ports such as Antwerp (the fifth biggest port in the world and Europe’s largest chemical cluster), Ghent (the world’s second biggest fruit-juice port) and Zeebrugge (which handles more new cars than any other port in the world) and also thanks to the regional airports Ostend/Bruges and Antwerp as well as Brussels International Airport.
Flanders in Action
Flanders comes 25th in a ranking of 125 European regions. To develop the region’s position further, the Flemish government launched the project Vlaanderen in Actie (ViA – Flanders in Action), whose aim is to make Flanders one of the top five European regions by 2020. You will find comprehensive information about this project at www.flandersinaction.be.
You can find more information about investing in Flanders on the following websites:
Flanders Investment & Trade
Rue Gaucheret 90
1030 Brussels, Belgium
Tel.: +32 (0)2 504 88 71
Fax: +32 (0)2 504 88 70