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ICC Secretary, TFC Chairperson visit WCO headquarter

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BRUSSELS:  Mr. John Danilovich, who took up the post of Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) six months ago, visited WCO Headquarters on 6 January 2015 to meet with Secretary General Kunio Mikuriya. He was accompanied by the ICC Customs and Trade Facilitation Commission Chairperson, Mr. Norman Schenk. Both parties acknowledged the excellent relationship between the two ... Read More »

Accused Scottish drug smuggler pays €10,000 for bail to Belgium Customs

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BRUSSELS: A Tayside (Scotland) accused of being a member of an international drug smuggling gang gave Belgian authorities a €10,000 bail payment to return home for Christmas. Raymond Urquhart, from Perth, was extradited out of Scotland in October to face charges of transporting cocaine and MDMA (ecstasy) across international borders. But it has emerged that lorry driver Urquhart who secured ... Read More »

Belgium Port Antwerp witnesses 4.2% increase in trade

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BRUSSELS: Port of Antwerp in Belgium increased 4.2 percent more in comparison with 2013. Port of Antwerp had handled around 198.8 million tons of freight by the end of the 2014. The previous record dates from 2013, when the freight volume came to 190.8 million tones. The record growth was driven by container handling (up 5.6%) and liquid bulk (up ... Read More »

Belgium Port of Antwerp handles 198.8 million tonnes of freight in 2014

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BELGIUM: Belgium port of Antwerp has expected to handle a total of 198.8 million tonnes of freight by the end of this year. That’s an increase of 4.2% in comparison with 2013 and a new record for the port, the company said in its press release here the other day. The previous record dates from 2013, when the freight volume ... Read More »

Customs union endorses new “Customs fraud” agreement

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BERLIN: COREPER, the EU’s Permanent Representatives Committee, has approved an agreement with the European Union aimed at cracking down on customs fraud. The agreement proposes a series of updates to the current rules on the anti-fraud system. The objective is to enhance supply chain security at EU and national levels. In turn, this should better protect the financial interests of ... Read More »

Belgium, Germany, France and Netherlands shrink wage gap to 2.9%

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BRUSSELS: The wage gap between Belgium and its three biggest neighbours, Germany, France and the Netherlands has been reduced to 2.9 percent in the past two years. The following two years 2013–2014 saw a 25 percent drop to 2.9 percent, it turns out. The improvement is due to the fact that wages in for example Germany saw a faster increase ... Read More »

Antwerp Port aims to increase barge transport share to 42% by 2030

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Brussels: The port of Antwerp aims to increase the share of barge transport in the modal mix from the present 36% to 42% by 2030. Barge transport plays a crucial role in maintaining sustainable links with the hinterland and underpinning the logistics goods flow. Not surprisingly, therefore, Antwerp Port Authority has for some years played a pioneering role to streamline ... Read More »

EU to entend tax ruling reforms to all member states

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BRUSSELS: The Commission said that it will now ask all member states to provide information about their tax ruling practices. Member states will be asked to confirm whether they provide tax rulings and, if they do, to provide a list of all companies that have received a tax ruling from 2010 to 2013. EU competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said: “We ... Read More »

Belgium: Fortum Co pays EUR 38m taxes in 3 years

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BRUSSELS: The authorities audited Fortum’s financing companies in Belgium and Holland for 2008 – 2011. For these years, Fortum has paid approximately EUR 38 million in taxes to Belgium and EUR 16 million to Holland on interest income in accordance with the local tax regulations. Fortum has received from the Finnish Tax Administration a non-taxation decision regarding activities in the ... Read More »

Belgium Customs seizes seven tonnes of tobacco   

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BRUSSELS: Belgium Customs has grasped 6.93 tonnes of tobacco at the Purfleet port shipping to UK. Border Force officers use hi-tech search equipment to combat immigration crime and detect banned and restricted goods that smugglers attempt to bring into the country. The smuggling attempt proved successful it would have cost the Treasury approximately £1.77m in unpaid duty. Mark Kennedy, Border ... Read More »

Belgium shows interest in Morocco port infrastructure development

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BRUSSELS: Belgium has been interested for years in the development of the business climate in Morocco. Morocco is a “hub for Africa”, he said, adding that Belgium is willing to put its expertise at the disposal of Moroccan operators. This was stated by Ambassador during a meeting with Minister of Equipment, Transports and Logistics Aziz Rabbah on the occasion of ... Read More »

IMF urges Belgium to modify labour tax system to generate extra revenue

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BRUSSELS: The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said that Belgium’s economic program includes “many welcome measures” to address macroeconomic challenges caused by low employment and the country’s fiscal imbalance. It said that there has been a net decrease in Belgium’s labour taxes, but that more tax reforms could generate extra revenue to reduce them still further. In a statement following an ... Read More »

FedEx acquisition to boost e-commerce with Bongo International’s acquisition

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BRUSSELS: FedEx has made another acquisition to boost its e-commerce credentials — cross-border solutions firm Bongo International. The acquisition comes just days after the Memphis-based shipping giant announced plans to buy the returns specialist GENCO. Bongo International is a Florida-based company that provides technology for e-commerce merchants to sell to international consumers.The company’s end-to-end range of services includes duty and ... Read More »

National strike cuts off Belgium from world

BRUSSELS: The Belgian strike came days after a day of protest in Italy against Prime Minister Matteo Renzi´s ambitious reform plans, while there have been similar demonstrations in Spain and Greece in recent months. “There has never been a strike this strong,” Marie-Helene Ska, the head of the Christian CSC union, was quoted as saying by the Belga news agency. ... Read More »

Belgium Green climate fund draws pledges worth $10 billion

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BRUSSELS: As global climate negotiations continue in Lima, Peru, pledges to the Green Climate Fund have surpassed $10 billion. Yesterday both Belgium and Australia announced support for the fund, with the countries pledging €51.7 million (US$64.4 million) and $200 million respectively. The Fund is designed to contribute to global climate mitigation strategies by providing assistance to developing countries. The Fund ... Read More »