The Flemish government’s Brexit task force provides an additional €83 million in aid for companies affected by the effects of the Brexit, the task force decided.
Of this aid, €33 million will go to exports and €50 million to the Agency for Innovation & Entrepreneurship (VLAIO), which will provide operating aid.
In Flanders, and especially in West Flanders, many jobs depend on the outcome of the Brexit negotiations. According to Flemish Minister-President Jan Jambon, these are rather difficult.
“We hope to have an agreement by the end of October. In any case, our companies will have to bear the consequences,” he said.
In Flanders, a no-deal Brexit would put some 28,000 jobs at risk. “We would then record a loss of 2.5% of GDP. That would be a drama on top of the corona crisis,” Jambon said. In the case of a classic free trade agreement, a loss of 1.8% GDP is predicted.
That is why the Task Force foresees an additional €83 million in aid.
With the money for exports, “we want to help companies to develop new markets,” says Minister for Economy Hilde Crevits.
The money for VLAIO “is for companies affected by the fact that they can no longer trade with Britain. They will have to adapt their production processes and can use this aid for that purpose.”
The task force wants to focus specifically on supporting businesses. “We do not want to pay compensation under Brexit but to give very targeted support to create additional jobs or protect existing jobs,” Crevits said.
Moreover, Jambon calls on companies to prepare well for Brexit. “The smallest enterprises are not always aware of what Brexit can do for them. A lot of information is available and companies can contact the relevant agencies to see how they can best cope with Brexit,” Jambon said.
The Brussels Times