Preface from the Managing Director

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An industry in transition

This 7th sustainability report by essenscia, the Belgian industry federation for chemistry and life sciences, comes at a strategic moment in time.

The European Union is setting course for a carbon neutral and zero pollution society by the year 2050. The direction is set and our industry embraces wholeheartedly the challenge to respond to these ambitious targets.

The chemical and life sciences industry is a stronghold of the Belgian and European economy and plays a key role to provide the technical and innovative solutions which our society and economy are searching for.

The report clearly highlights the willingness of the chemical and life sciences industry to respond to the societal expectations and articulates the pathways which might help us to get to the world we all want to live in.

This report shows the remarkable progress which the chemical and life sciences industry has achieved over the recent past. On nearly 40 indicators in the areas of People, Planet and Prosperity tangible results have been monitored and registered.

It shows an industry in search of continuous improvement and tuned to the needs of the society it operates in. This is illustrated with many state-of-the art examples undertaken by our member companies on all dimensions of sustainability.

But perhaps even more importantly, the report also acknowledges the unprecedented effort that lies ahead of us. Reducing CO2 to zero, tackling plastic waste, shifting towards a circular economy and making chemicals and pharmaceuticals safe but at the same time effective in use are all tremendous challenges.

No definite answers can be given yet on many questions, but the report clearly highlights the willingness of this industry to respond to these societal expectations and articulates the pathways which might help us to get to the world we all want to live in.

Convincing young talents to embark with us on this fascinating journey is our prime responsibility. It is together with our current and future talents that we will be able to forge the path to a vibrant and healthy industry in a world respectful of its limited boundaries.

We hope you will share our enthusiasm in this search for excellence.

Yves Verschueren,
Managing Director essenscia