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The circular economy: an opportunity not to be missed

From 18 to 20 November, Belgium will host the Circular Economy Hotspot. In order to deal with climate, environmental and economic challenges, the circular economy has become a key objective for the European Union and Belgium. An economic shift that the Federal State, the regions, cities and Belgian companies absolutely do not want to miss.

On Wednesday 20 November in Heysel, Brussels, the Hotspot will give the floor to the entrepreneurs who are implementing the circular economy in Belgium. A panel comprised of Tom Dehoux (Founder of HNST Jeans, an SME that recycles denim), Crist’l Joris (CEO of ETAP Lighting, an Antwerp-based company that tracks energy waste) and a representative from the multinational company TOTAL will set the tone of the debate. Wim Careel of the Metal workers union, FGTB Metal and Piotr Barczak (European Environmental Bureau) will spice up the discussion with their critical comments.

In order to establish the status at European Level, Hans Bruyninckx, Executive Director of the European Environment Agency (EEA), will present the main recommendations from the Agency’s latest report on the circular economy. He also intends to intersperse his speech with strong messages targeting European policy makers: “Europe’s circular economy ambitions and initiatives are promising but they are still in their infancy. It is now time to pick up the pace of change from initial steps to bold leaps that transform our currently unsustainable systems of production and consumption.”

A message clearly well received in Belgium. Even more recently, Marie Christine-Marghem, Federal Minister of the Environment and Sustainable Development said that “the implementation of a circular economy model not only protects resources and biodiversity but also reduces CO2 emissions. It is therefore working in the interest of the environment, but also the consumer. It is therefore our duty as politicians to continue working to implement this model in consultation with the different levels of power and the European Commission so that it becomes cross-cutting across the different sectors of our economy.”

Information for journalists

The programme for the Hotspot and the 20 November session is available at https://circulareconomyhotspotbelgium.be/

For the press kit and all interview requests, please contact hotspotspress2019@health.fgov.be