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Ben de Smitt , Economic Counsellor at The Belgian Embassy, invites you to attend their specialist seminar

This event will be held at Burleigh Court, Loughborough University, Loughborough.
This event will begin on Thursday 17 February 2011, 8:00am - 10:30am

belgian_embassy_crestThe Belgian Embassy will be hosting a specialist seminar focussing on Belgium as a gateway to European Business Opportunities. The seminar will offer a perspective on the dynamics of trading & investing with our European neighbours and explore the advantages of using Belgium as part of a European growth strategy. The Embassy would like to invite any business considering European Business Development to attend.

Why Europe?

It is a great time for UK businesses to explore trade and investment opportunities in Europe. The European continent offers some very attractive markets, which are easy to access in terms of geography – just a short ‘hop’ across the channel and also because of the “free trade” agreement that exists between us as part of the European Union. It is an excellent time for UK businesses to export and with the current economic climate, there is a need for organisations in the UK to look for new business opportunities beyond our shores.

Belgium Your Gateway to Europe


flanders-europeBelgium boasts a uniquely central location at the hub of the wealthiest and most densely populated area of Europe. Its position at the cross roads of European trade, has helped it foster a deep-rooted understanding of cross border flexibility and offers businesses a stable market-driven economy.

Geographically, Belgium’s immediate neighbours are France, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and the closest continental European neighbour to the UK.


shipBelgium has an excellent transport and communications infrastructure to make the most of its central location. The Flanders region alone is home to four ports, including three of Europe’s main ports: Antwerp, Ghent and Zeebrugge. Each port connects with its continental neighbours via extensive inland waterway and rail networks. The airports – Brussels, Antwerp and Ostend – are also well connected to the rail networks, as well as to a first-rate motorway system – one of the highest density road networks in the world giving easy access to all neighbouring countries. Because of its central location and its well-developed logistics infrastructure, Belgium and especially the Flanders region is a key player in importing goods for distribution within the wider European market -making it an ideal location for European logistics.

The People

scientistBelgium’s traditional ethic of hard work has resulted in one of the world’s most productive workforces. Belgium offers a large skilled and motivated pool of talent. Belgium has three official languages – Dutch, French and German and you will find Belgian executives fluent in all of these, as well as English – rated as a ‘virtual’ fourth official language.

The impressive skills base is underpinned by an exceptional educational system that places Belgium at the top of the world rankings.

First-Class Business Environment

office-buildingIn a competitive environment, a country’s tax system is a key factor for a business to take into account when deciding on expanding overseas. Businesses wishing to expand into Belgium are actively encouraged by both the federal and regional governments. In addition to cash grants, various kinds of incentives are available for the recruitment and training of personnel or to drive research and development.

For entrepreneurs wishing to start a business – the Belgian authorities try to make this as simple as possible, as they truly value entrepreneurship. With the introduction of a single starter form, it is possible to deal with the main administrative start-up formalities as a single business one-stop shop. The launch of governmental e-services cuts the time to incorporate a business even more, to less than a week. Once set up – a full advisory and support service is available for companies taking their first steps into Belgium.

The Belgians are renowned for their cross-border flexibility and understanding of what today’s business world demands. They fluently combine technology or science with entrepreneurial skills. In addition the cosmopolitan nature of cities such as Brussels, Antwerp and Ghent combined with the large number of foreign companies in Belgium already, has added to the international business culture in the region.


kitesBelgium offers an excellent quality of life with an exceptionally high standard of living for expatriate families. There are a wide range of quality choices in healthcare and education as well as a multitude of leisure activities on offer in the arts, sports and other areas to suit every taste.

And of course Belgium has long been associated with great food, gourmet beers and exquisite Belgian chocolates.

If you are planning to expand to the Continent or looking for European Partners and whether your company is considering production or R&D facilities, contact centres, headquarters or logistics, come along to the specialist seminar hosted by The Belgian Embassy.

Ben De Smit – Economic and Commercial Counsellor at The Belgian Embassy will be offering his expert advice on how UK Businesses can make the most of trade and export opportunities on the continent. Other specialist speakers will be covering important issues such as how to finance operations, tax, incentives and other practicalities in a Belgian Context.

Following the seminar, there will be an opportunity to have one to one meetings with speakers and other trade and embassy officials allowing you to tap into their knowledge and expertise.

Book your tickets

Tickets for the seminars are £25 + VAT per delegate and include breakfast.

Click here to download the booking form.

Please click here for programme information and a list of speakers.

Once completed, please print it out and send with cheque (made payable to Deyton Bell Limited) to:

Deyton Bell Limited,
Newton Hall,
Town Street, Newton,
Cambridge CB22 7ZE

If you have any queries or would like to pay by BACS please contact Jessica Heavey on 01223 873033 or email below