• Shanghai shining: Flanders will be there after all

    Shanghai, here they come

    21 Jan 2009 by Ad Min
    Flanders will be represented at the World Exhibition in Shanghai in 2010, but it was a close-run thing. “There are many better ways these days to promote a country or a region than to stand in a corner of the Belgian pavilion at something so outdated as a world exhibition,” said Flemish minister-president Kris Peeters in October 2007, commenting on the decision taken by his government several weeks previously, but not at the time announced. “It costs far too much, and brings relatively little in return,” he said.Full story
  • China rising

    21 Jan 2009 by Ad Min
    Despite the huge imbalance in size, Belgium and China have well-established trade links, and economic and business connections between the two countries are growing all the time. The global financial meltdown has of course had an impact, but China's economy is still growing, and several Flemish companies are setting their sights on getting a slice of the potentially lucrative Chinese market.Full story
  • Oulematou and Luna

    News in brief:

    21 Jan 2009 by Ad Min
    The 2009 Auto Salon opened at the Brussels Expo at Heizel amid worries of the effects of the economic crisis on sales. Organisers reported that all stands were filled as usual, but many exhibitors had clearly invested less on the occasion than usual. One report said that Mercedes was spending up to 40% less on its presence this year, while Opel’s budget was 25% down. Car manufacturers, meanwhile, spent “more than 10% less” than in previous years on advertising, according to advertising agency Clear Channel. The January salon period is normally a high-point of the year for car advertising.Full story
  • Manhattan transfer

    21 Jan 2009 by Ad Min
    Anheuser Busch InBev, the Leuven-based largest brewer in the world, caused shock waves last week when it announced its plan to move a complete layer of senior management to New York. Following an unspecified transition period, 116 management jobs will move from Leuven to Manhattan. The jobs concerned are currently held by 89 Belgian staff and 27 other nationalities in departments such as finance, personnel, legal and marketing.Full story
  • Taking it personally

    14 Jan 2009 by Flanders Today
    Certainly, it must be something that has flown over from the United States, where you can contract out virtually any task: walking your dog, picking up your groceries, parking your car or shopping for a new wardrobe. Now, small companies are popping up all over Flanders, willing to take over the agonising chore of scrutinising this season's trends and picking out only those items that are perfectly right for youFull story
  • A new year, a new look

    14 Jan 2009 by Ad Min
    In the mid-1990s, French photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand embarked on an ambitious project: to create an image bank of aerial photographs of the earth. The remarkable book that resulted – The Earth from Above – was published in 1999 and translated into 24 languages. It is one of the world’s best selling illustrated books with more than six million copies in print. Unsurprisingly, it stimulated publishers around the world to consider similar books.Full story
  • Hanging the tapestries

    14 Jan 2009 by Flanders Today
    From the early 15th century, Flanders was renowned for its huge, beautiful, tapestries. Through sumptuous fabrics of wool and silk, threaded with gold and silver, they brought to life contemporary events such as decisive battles, as well as stories from the Old Testament, the life of Christ and the saints, romances of chivalry and ancient myths and legends.Full story
  • Fortis leaves battle over chairmanship to shareholders

    14 Jan 2009 by Ad Min
    The board of Fortis Bank this week declined to put its weight behind any of the candidates for the chairmanship of the company, instead sending a list of six names of candidate-directors to the shareholders’ meetings in February in Brussels and Utrecht. Shareholders at those meetings will have the opportunity to choose one of the candidates as chairman.Full story
  • Cats and dogs no longer for sale in shops

    15 Things you need to know

    14 Jan 2009 by Ad Min
    1 The cost of dienstencheques, or service cheques, used to pay household help, went up from €7 to €7.50. The lower price cheques will still be valid until expiration. Full story
  • New justice minister Stefaan De Clerck

    Prisoners go free because of procedural error

    14 Jan 2009 by
    Ten criminals involved in four major cases of organised crime, including drugs and human trafficking, were released from prison last week after an appeal court found that there had been serious procedural errors in their prosecution.Full story

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