3 January 2023

The past year has been an intense one as lawmakers grappled with the return of war on the continent, energy and cost of living crises. For innovators and business this has had effect on how they look for funding, develop projects and prepare for the future green, digital and circular economy transitions. Leaving 2022 behind, FI Group recaps the biggest news and changes to help you prepare for the new year. 

Steps forward with Next Generation EU 

The last year has taught us the importance of addressing the environmental crisis and needed digital developments touching all aspects of the economic lifecycle. In order to address the economic crisis resulting from COVID-19 in a fair, equitable and environmentally conscious manner, the European Commission will support efforts at national level, in particular in the most affected countries through NEXT Generation EU. The recovery plan will raise funds by temporarily raising the own resources’ ceiling to 2% of the EU’s gross national income, allowing it to borrow 750 billion euro on the financial markets. Part of it will be allocated towards Belgium’s Recovery and Resilience plan.   

FI Group tracks the latest developments and decisions, following up on the strategic investments being made in 2023. For Belgium, the RRP is a result of a coordination proces between all Belgian governments. Have a look at the current state of the budget and the projects its been allocated towards

365 days of R&D support 

By achieving the right balance between the interests of both innovators and the R&D fiscal landscape, our FI Group consulting experts aim to foster an environment in which creativity and innovation can thrive. With deep knowledge of several tax support measures and grants on multiple levels, they help your ideas grow. 

Intellectual Property (IP) enables people to earn recognition or financial benefit from what they invent or create. In 2022, we spoke with Michel Caldana, Senior Consultant and IPBox Specialist at FI Group Belgium. He shares insights into why Intellectual Property Rights are an integral part of a business strategy and help achieve its objectives.   

Furthermore, Dylan Meneve, Business Developer at FI Group Belgium, spoke of how a lower labour cost can help your innovation. Committed to improving your business, the best way to start is by investigating how something can be done more efficiently. 

Federal plans have also been shared that can impact the tax-advantaged treatment of authors’ rights. It provides insight into the future of this tax support measure, its implementation, and the impact on taxes payable within certain sectors. So far, these notions have not been translated into a concrete reform but FI Group keeps up with the latest decisions. 

Finally, FI Group helps to pave the path from the public administration to the companies. This both on a local, regional, national and European level. Once a public administration starts with calls for proposals, certain steps need to be followed to access them. Our FI consultants summarise them in 8 simple ones!  

Opportunities created because of the circular economy 

In 2020, Belgian companies will have invested more than 18 billion euros in Research and Development. This puts Belgium in second place among the Member States of the European Union with the most investments in this domain. The following report maps out the most thriving sectors and multiple opportunities for your growing business.  

This growth is partially created by the transition towards a circular economy, where the aim is to create a boost through green technology, create sustainable industry and transport and reduce pollution. It has the potential to transform the Belgian economy and generate new and sustainable competitive advantages, going beyond recycling. It focuses on consumption reduction, longevity, reuse, recovery, eco-design and new forms of consumption of products and services.     

Have you added these to your reading list? 

For more than twenty years, FI Group has been helping companies all over the world to finance their innovation through the management of R&D tax incentives and other financial sources. As such, it seemed natural for us to publish our guide to international R&D tax schemes available for companies willing to achieve competitive advantages through innovation.   

Boosting your R&D activities into the new year 

The new year is right around the corner and brings brilliant opportunities. Projects that are currently floating around as an idea and need to be worked out can be launched in 2023. Looking for support for your groundbreaking research? Strengthen your R&D activities in the coming months with the following grants!   

How Belgium is dealing with the current energy crisis 

For enterprises in the Flemish and Walloon region dealing with rising energy prices and experiencing trouble with employment, production and purchasing power, a support package has been created by each government. In Flanders, on the one side, compensating increased energy costs and extending available loans, on the other side, the launch of an impulse programme to accelerate the energy transition. In Wallonia, this is ranging from direct support for enterprises dealing with the rising energy prices to loans and repayments.   

Furthermore, the European Commission approved a 1.5 billion euro Belgian guarantee scheme to support gas and electricity suppliers in the context of Russia’s war against Ukraine. This as a result of the serious disruption the EU economy is experiencing.    

FI Group has 20 years of experience and wants to support you in understanding and exploiting the available R&D+I opportunities. Our experts are at your disposal to analyse your project and take the next steps together with you towards innovation.    

Yvette Poumpalova   

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