Our two largest cities, Brussels and Antwerp, are the only two Belgian cities to feature among Europe’s top 50 economic centres. Brussels is our major gateway for international finance, investment and institutions, while Antwerp is our major port city with specialisms in logistics, manufacturing, diamonds, retail and business services. Each has its own unique strengths, but how do they compete on a global scale? And what exactly is it that is it that makes a city competitive?
As a result of the 6th state reform in 2014, the legislative competence as regards the employment of foreigners has been transferred to the regional level. The regions have been empowered to develop their own policies on the employment of foreign workers in function of the specific needs of their labour market. Flanders is first amongst the three regions to introduce new policies in this area. Brussels might follow the example in the next legislature while the Walloon region seems not to prioritize this policy area. Fragomen met with the cabinet of Philippe Muyters, Flemish Minister of Work, Economy, Innovation and Sports, this October and reports back on this topic.
Contemplating a move to Belgium is quite a task in itself, however once you have made the decision to relocate, there is then the rather complex exercise of figuring out immigration regulations, spousal rights and customary red tape. Who better to enlighten us on the ins and outs of the Belgian immigration system than the experts themselves, Fragomen. We’ve asked them the burning questions you want to know the answer to – whatever stage of the immigration process you are approaching, they’ve got it covered.
With so many different days celebrated across Flanders, Wallonia and Brussels, you’d be forgiven for wondering which are actually official bank holidays. With 2017 gradually coming to an end, Pro-Pay provides you with a handy overview of the Belgian public holidays for the year 2018 and a reminder of the rules applicable to replacement days.
The second EuRA conference session that stood out for its relevance to all our members spoke about leveraging social media for our business’ benefit. Entitled “How small companies can use the power of social media” it proved an inspiring session full of practical advice. We’ve spoken about how to turn your stakeholders into brand believers and the tech shift that is driven by millennials, but this issue we bring you easy to follow advice on how to get yourself noticed on social media as growing brand recognition and opportunities to convert new clients increasingly take place online. You may also want to check out what EuRA’s keynote speaker Tony Chapman had to say on selling your brand.
Inspired by the ‘Clicking Culturally’ session at the recent EuRA Relocation Congress in Warsaw we decided to look at what happens when we feel ready to pass our ‘baby’ on to the next generation. Will your company stay in the family or will you find that perfect partner who is willing to contribute to its growth after you say goodbye? And what happens after you have left? Will everybody be as happy as they once were? Will people ‘click’ with the new company culture?
Evolution is key to just about everything, and it’s not limited to the natural world either. In business we need to evolve to stay ahead of the market, to develop new trends and to keep the lifeblood of a business flowing. Most importantly, we need to know how to evolve our business practices to retain our most precious present employees, and to attract future employees, filled with fresh energy and new perspectives.
2016 was without doubt a difficult year for the hotel industry, with Brussels most definitely taking the biggest knock and occupancy rates plummeting by more than 20%. This was largely attributed to terrorist actions and in a smaller part due to the rise of the likes of homestay networks such as AirBnB. Not being one to dwell on the past, ReLocate looks toward a bright and shiny second half of 2017 which by all accounts will be an upturn kind of year for the hotel industry. We bring you all the wonderful concepts of the future of hotels, how the hotel industry is going to reshape itself to keep up with the competition, and what we can expect in the year to come.
Let’s make an equation containing three elements: city + international companies + (international) talent. The desired outcome: an attractive environment, wealth, social cohesion. Or, in other words, an attractive brand. You, dear reader, will surely be aware that a happy worker is a happy company is a happy city is a happy resident is a happy worker…. ReLocate has recently focused on a number of things that can contribute to a companies’ wellbeing – and their employees – today we’d like to focus on what cities can do. A survey among 1.264 international workers tells us: a lot.
Just as the US has Silicon Valley, Flanders has Biotech Valley. Or rather ís, because the activities of the Life Sciences and pharmaceutical industry are so dense you need a magnifier to discover every spin-off and start-up. Flanders is Big in Life Sciences, of global stature as a matter of fact, and that, as you might imagine, generates an inflow of knowledge workers, also known as expats.