Benelux Circular Economy Business Forum 2022: Showcase of the Benelux and the Greater Region’s circular economy key initiatives!

Chambres de Commerce - Grande Région Saar-Lor-Lux
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The Benelux Circular Economy Business Forum was honored by the presence of H.R.H. the Crown Prince, here with (from left to right) Alain de Muyser, Secretary General of the Benelux Union, Franz Fayot, Minister of the Economy, and Carlo Thelen, CEO / Director General, Chamber of Commerce.

Circularity in construction, in the industry sector, waste management, single use plastics, reuse, reparability… were the main themes discussed during the Benelux Circular Economy Business Forum, which took place on 4th and 5th October 2022. More than 150 participants assisted to this multiformat event organised by the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce and its Enterprise Europe Network, together with the Benelux Union and in close collaboration with the Luxembourg Ministry of the Economy, the Luxembourg Ministry for the Greater Region and “Betriber & Ëmwelt” of the Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology. 

Taking place in the framework of the 2022 Luxembourg Presidency of the Benelux Union, this 2-Day cross-border economic forum was honored by the presence of H.R.H. the Crown Prince, the Luxembourg Minister of the Economy, Mr Franz Fayot, the Minister for the Greater Region Ms Corinne Cahen, the Vice-President of the Grand Est Region, Ms Brigitte Torloting and the Secretary General of the Benelux Union, Mr Alain de Muyser. Followed by numerous high-level speakers and experts in the field, the event encompassed an interesting and varied programme, thus offering a vibrant and fascinating business platform to exchange best practices, share expertise and visions as well as develop potential business leads related to circular economy trends and strategies in Luxembourg, the Benelux, and the Greater Region. 

Meeting the needs of the present, circular economy plays a key role in achieving sustainable development and in transforming nowadays economies and societies. Moving away from the 'linear economy model' towards a 'circular economy' one with the creation of long-term value and the reuse of products, the progressive implementation of sustainable practices will contribute to secure a greener and more inclusive environment for future generations. 

Even if, at first sight, this green transition represents for companies a challenge with significant adaptation efforts to face and overcome, mainly during turbulent moments of geopolitical tensions and economic turmoils, difficult times and threatening periods may also represent a concealed opportunity for growth or change. Therefore, it is so important to pool efforts together, within the Benelux countries and the Greater Region, through cross-border territorial cooperation and where it becomes even more valuable than in the past to develop joint projects and to create integrated cross-border value chains. 

Conclusions of the conferences and thematic workshops, as well as the presentations of the speakers and replays of some parts of the programme will be made available soon on the website of the Chamber of Commerce. 

The second day of the event was a perfect occasion to find synergies between the Benelux and the Greater Region. Both cooperations have the same goals, as highlighted by (from left to right) Carlo Thelen, CEO / Director General, Chamber of Commerce, Brigitte Torloting, Vice-President of the Grand Est Region, Corinne Cahen, Minister for Greater Region, and Alain de Muyser, General Secretary of the Benelux Union.
A panel discussion with experts of circular economy in Benelux countries took place, with the following key message: it is time to make circular economy happen! Thanks to Laurence Tock, Director Circular Economy & Sustainable Technologies, Ministry of the Economy, Romain Poulles, Managing Director, PROgroup, Florian André, CEO, P2S Management Consulting, Arthur ten Wolde, Executive Director & Circular Economy Expert,, and Johan Klaps, Managing Director - Belgium, Madaster.
Pooling efforts together is the key to make Circular Economy become powerful: the Greater Region is a perfect example of cooperation in this domain. Thanks to Charles-Albert Florentin, Cluster Manager, Luxembourg CleanTech Cluster, Paul Schosseler, Director Sustainable Construction & Circular Economy, Ministry of Energy and Spatial Planning, Charline Martin, Circular Economy Project Manager, Greenwin, Flavio Soldera, Managing Director European School of Materials (EUSMAT) at Saarland University, Bertrand Simon, Head of European Cooperation Programmes Department, Grand e-NOV+, Wolfgang Eberle, Chairman of the WG "Circular Economy" of the Summit of the Greater Region & Rheinland-Pfalz Ministry for Climate Protection, Environment, Energy and Mobility.