Together with its sector federations, including essenscia, the Federation of Belgian Enterprises (VBO) has developed a joint ‘Circular Economy Vision for 2030’. The document functions as a roadmap to give direction to the accelerated development of circular economic models over the next ten years and is built around five concrete ambitions. In this way, the business world wants to further strengthen Belgium’s leading position in the circular economy.
The circular economy is one of the keys to a prosperous and resilient economy in the long term. It is also an essential part of the economic recovery plan after the COVID-19 crisis. The Belgian business sectors have each in their own way been active in the circular economy for quite some time, long before the term became established. With a shared vision, the business community now wants to shift up a gear and embrace circularity as an engine for economic growth and sustainable wealth creation.
Leader in circular economy
The vision is ambitious and aims to further expand the position of Belgian industry as a leader in the circular economy by 2030. The vision fits within the principles of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and emphasises the importance of innovation within a regional, federal and European policy framework that enables and stimulates the switch to circular models. Main lines are maximum value creation thanks to increased competitiveness, easier access to materials, availability of alternative raw materials and job creation.
Five circular ambitions
The FEB and the relevant sector federations formulate five concrete ambitions on the basis of which they want to realise their vision by 2030 within a European framework.
- Maximising Availability of Materials
- Leading the way in circular design and production
- Being a front runner in circular usage models
- Leading the way in high-quality material recovery
- Shoring up the use of enablers for the circular economy (i.e. all measures that can support, enable or accelerate the transition to a circular economy)
A scoreboard will be developed to monitor progress every two years based on indicators from Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union. A first analysis and progress report is planned for 2022.
Need for a level playing field
The transition from a linear to a circular economy is a shared responsibility. For example, it is up to the Belgian governments to make the most of a European supportive policy framework. It will be crucial to consolidate the level playing field in the single European market. In addition, there is a need for a stronger strategic security of supply of materials and energy, we need to go beyond mere recycling and public procurement needs to pay more attention to sustainability and circularity.