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The biomass industry in Flanders

Here’s why Flanders and biomass are a perfect match, and how your business can reap the benefits.

Europe’s chemical industry is at a crucial crossroads, ready to seize the major advantage of using biomass as a resource for chemicals, materials and energy. Flanders plays a key role in creating this biobased economy, and owes its leading position to its strong foothold in agro-food, sugar and starch, promising value chains, recycling expertise and international gateways to biomass streams. Find out how to boost your biomass business in Flanders.

Total amount of biomass used in Flanders’ economic sectors

36%
food
18%
agriculture
15%
forestry
8%
animal feed
7%
trade
3%
chemicals
3%
textiles

A bustling biomass ecosystem

By setting up operations in Flanders, you will gain access to a close-knit business and knowledge ecosystem ideal for your biomass activities.

Unrivalled expertise in biomass

Flanders is leader in biomass feedstocks, thanks to its strong foothold in agro-food, promising value chains and position as major recycling hub.

All the talent at hand

Flanders offers dedicated, highly specific education and training programs to foster promising talent in the field of biomass. These include:

Ideal location for your biomass activities

With three seaports, three international airports and a dense network of pipelines, roads, railroads and inland waterways, Flanders offers a strong and – above all – globally-oriented logistics network. In addition, the region is ideally situated between the Netherlands, France and Germany, three nations with significant strengths in terms of biomass and biotechnology.

International access to biomass streams

Through the Ports of Antwerp, Ghent and Zeebrugge, Flanders attracts major cargo streams, such as agricultural bulk. The ports also offer a gateway to lignocellulose as a biomass feedstock. As such, lignocellulose material can be sourced internationally in the form of wood pellets, wood chips, etc.

Specific incentives

Flanders offers incentives that are particularly relevant to organizations conducting intensive biomass research. Examples include:

  • Investment deduction for R&D – 13.5% of acquisition value/qualifying asset or 20.5% of the depreciated amount;
  • Exemption of payment of 80% – of the personal income withholding tax of researchers in certain scientific fields.

Green certificates

Flanders has a system of ‘green certificates’ to promote energy generation from renewable sources. Put in place by VREG, the regulator of the electricity and gas market in Flanders, the system is two-pronged:

  • on one hand, producers of electricity from renewable energy sources such as biomass can receive green certificates, which they may sell;
  • on the other hand, power suppliers must submit a specific number of green certificates to avoid a fine.

Did you know…

  • ... 1.81% of the gross margin of Flanders’ economy is biobased?
  • … 22% of the installed electrical power at the Port of Ghent is generated through the combustion of biomass? 

Interested in doing business in Flanders?

Let us help you!

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  • We organize site visits to real estate locations
  • We assist with all legal aspects of setting up a business
  • We're an official government agency
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  • It's completely free.
  • Get an overview of all incentives relevant to your company.
  • Tax system explained in-depth.
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  • Discover the benefits of Flanders (in addition to the chocolate).

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The biomass industry in Flanders | Invest in Flanders

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