Brussels Airport Company considers moving HQ to Flanders

Summary

In what would be a practical move for the company but a symbolic move for the country, the managers of Brussels Airport considers an official move to Zaventem

In name only

The management of Brussels Airport Company has proposed moving its official headquarters to Zaventem, business daily De Tijd reports. At present, the legal address of the company is in Schaarbeek in Brussels.

All of the company’s operations are centred at the airport, and the official address being elsewhere creates postal delays with legal documents and registered mail, a spokesperson explained.

While a minor practical move for Brussels Airport Company – in charge of all operations at Brussels Airport – it’s a much bigger symbolic act. The Belgian state holds a 25% stake, and the airport is intended to have a strongly national rather than regional identity.

When management presented its proposal to the board of directors, it encountered strong resistance from the two French-speaking directors – rail authority CFO Olivier Hénin and property developer Benjamin Cardanel.

The discussion is also taking place as tensions continue between the airport and the Brussels-Capital Region over the region’s tough new restrictions on aircraft noise, which has already seen companies move out of Zaventem to escape fines.

The move would also bring the Brussels Airport Company entirely within the jurisdiction of Flemish regulations, another cause for concern among representatives of the French-speaking community.

Photo: Tom D’haenens/BAC