Our global network
European policy intervenes in numerous aspects of the lives of citizens and companies: energy, safety, work, environment, transport, agriculture, education, innovation, enterprise, international trade, etc. Together with EUROCHAMBRES, the European association of chambers of commerce, we wish to shape this policy and ensure that it takes into account the needs and limitations of companies, in particular small and medium enterprises. After all, companies form the source of all wealth, and should not be restricted unnecessarily.
On the other hand, there is still a great deal of work to be done to make the European Union a fully-fledged internal market, where businesses are able to offer services in other member states without any setbacks, or where companies can easily open a new site in another country. With its positions papers, EUROCHAMBRES actively collaborates in dismantling borders and shaping the internal market.
As chambers of commerce, we are not only talkers but also doers. We walk our talk. We not only talk about the importance of internationalisation for our enterprises, but we also assist them in this. We not only emphasise the need for a proper connection of training on the labour market, but we are also involved in a number of training projects up to and including managing technical and professional courses in certain countries. Within EUROCHAMBERS, this translates into a considerable raft of projects where new concepts are often tried out. However, this is always based on experience and the close links with the companies making our chambers so unique.
EUROCHAMBRES, a network of 1,700 regional and local chambers of commerce in 43 countries, of 20 million companies jointly providing 120 million people employment.
ICC – World Chambers Federation
ICC rightly calls itself the world business organisation. It is the voice of the business world on a global level. It devotes itself to open, free and fair trade, in a spirit of compliance and social responsibility. It advocates self-regulation and alternative dispute resolution by means of mediation and arbitration. In Belgium, ICC is active through its ICC Belgium national committee, of which the Federation is one of the founders.
Within ICC, the chambers of commerce have joined together in the World Chambers Federation. For us, WCF is the forum where we meet colleagues from all over the world. For Belgian companies, it is the springboard to the furthest corners of this planet.
WCF fulfils a crucial role for the issuing of export documents by the chambers of commerce:
- together with the World Customs Organisation, it manages the ATA-system
- thanks to its guidelines and accreditation programme, it ensures that certificates of origin comply with statutory requirements and are accepted by foreign customs services.
Conférence Permanente des Chambres Consulaires Africaines et Francophones
Africa assumes a special position within the Federation’s international operation. Directly and indirectly, we have a large number of contacts that are able to assist Belgian companies in doing business in this increasingly important market. Since 2005, the Federation is member of the Conférence Permanente des Chambres Consulaires Africaines et Francophones (CPCCAF), headquartered in Paris, was founded in 1973 with the aim – by means of collaboration between chambers of commerce – to contribute toward the economic development of the private sector in French-speaking Africa. Priority domains of action are technical and professional training, supporting and guiding companies, international enterprise, economic information, advocacy and managing public infrastructure. Besides developing the capacity of chambers in Africa, CPCCAF also regularly organises trade missions.