Anja Heinen has been leading the Luxembourg branch of AWEX for 10 years now. She advices Wallonia business leaders on strategic planning, analysis and assistance on market entry and expansion in Luxembourg. As a foreign investment commissioner, Anja Heinen has an overall responsibility for the attraction of foreign investment into Wallonia, this includes seeking out and providing information to potential foreign investors. In this interview she explains us her role and the economical synergies between Luxembourg and Wallonia.
As Trade & Investment Commissioner, you are leading the Luxembourg branch of AWEX – can you tell us a bit more about the AWEX ?
The AWEX – Wallonia Foreign Trade & Investment Agency is a public service provider for Wallonia (southern part of Belgium) based companies seeking to export, and for foreign investors seeking the best place to establish their company. With headquarters in Brussels, we have a worldwide network of 105 offices.
Which services do you actually provide here in Luxembourg ?
As a foreign trade agency, I give advice to yearly about 250 Wallonia business leaders on strategic planning and analysis, and assist them on market entry and expansion in Luxembourg. I also assist local buyers, decision-makers and importers by providing economic data on Wallonia and its export potential. As a foreign investment agency, I have an overall responsibility for the attraction of foreign investment into Wallonia, this includes seeking out and providing information to potential foreign investors. As a global business developer, I organize seminars and networking events both in Wallonia and Luxembourg.
Is Luxembourg an important market for Wallonia ?
Indeed, Luxembourg is actually Wallonia’s 7th client with a bit more than 4% of its export turnover, if only product exchanges are considered. If we could add the amount of export in terms of services to these statistics, then Luxembourg would probably be our 4th customer.
From the Luxembourgish point of view, Belgium is ranked as 1st provider with more than 35% of its imports.
We are co-organizing next week’s Meetup event : what are you expecting from this event ?
We wish to highlight the strong ties linking Wallonia to Luxembourg in terms of business. After a first introduction by H.E. Thomas ANTOINE, Ambassador of Belgium to Luxembourg, and a first focus on business creation and funding in Wallonia, 4 Walloon entrepreneurs will share with us their views on both ecosystems, the reasons they decided to establish their businesses on one or the other or both sides of the border, and the opportunities to stay tuned on both markets. A closing cocktail will of course give everyone the chance to network.
More information about AWEX – Wallonia Foreign Trade and Investment Agency