More than one in four Belgians fears autonomous cars to be unsafe

More than one in four Belgians fears autonomous cars to be unsafe

Confidence among Belgian consumers in autonomous vehicles is stagnating, according to consulting firm Deloitte’s study on the subject published Thursday, during the ongoing Brussels motor show. 43% of respondents do not believe that these vehicles will be safe, which is a slight decrease from 50% last year, and down sharply from 69% in 2017 who expressed concern about these cars’ safety. A series of high-profile incidents may have contributed to the loss of consumers’ confidence, Deloitte justifies, while expecting gradual acceptance to come. Moreover, only a third (33%) of consumers…

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Flanders organizes bulk purchase of electric cars

Flanders organizes bulk purchase of electric cars

Flanders will organize a bulk purchase of electric cars and their charging systems was heard on the side lines of the Brussels auto show. This task was entrusted to the Bobex quote request platform, which said that was a first in Europe. Consumers will be able to choose among four models, and will benefit from a significant reduced group price, as well as from additional promotions. Registration will close on 15 May. The Flemish government aims at raising the electric car share in the north of the country to 7.5%…

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Banks may be allowed to open on evenings, weekends and holidays, if staff agree

Banks may be allowed to open on evenings, weekends and holidays, if staff agree

Belgium’s banks could start practising more liberal opening hours from as early as next month, if unions representing bank employees agree to a proposal formulated by the banks themselves, De Tijd reports. Under the agreement reached by the banks, branches would be able to open until 2000 and in certain cases until 2200. Opening could also be extended to Saturday afternoons (after the current limit of 1300) and, in exceptional cases, to Sundays and public holidays. The new liberalisation would be the first major change in banking hours since a…

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Port of Antwerp sounds the alarm

Port of Antwerp sounds the alarm

“Delay Brexit” says Belgium’s Port of Antwerp. Jacques Vandermeiren, CEO of the Port of Antwerp, has called for Britain’s departure from the EU to be postponed: “We need more time to prepare for the worst” he says. Jacques Vandermeiren: “If no deal is reached before the end of March, we will be in uncharted territory and our businesses face chaos. It would be a good idea, if all parties received more time to prepare for the very worst. There are less than eighty days left.” Mr Vandermeiren calls for Brexit…

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hold Delhaize to open 350 new outlets in Belgium

hold Delhaize to open 350 new outlets in Belgium

The Belgian-Dutch distribution group Ahold Dehaize announced on Monday that it aimed to accelerate growth by opening about 350 stores and supermarkets in three to four years. In addition to opening 200 new Fresh Atelier and Shop&Go stores, which it announced in late October, the group plans to add 100 new supermarkets (SM, AD or Proxy) and 30 to 50 Albert Heijn supermarkets in Flanders. The Dutch supermarket chain Albert Heijn, whose mother company is Ahold, is still a chain in its own right in Belgium, De Standaard reported. This…

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Proximus prepares for future competition

Proximus prepares for future competition

The chief executive officer of Proximus, Dominique Leroy, is taking up her responsibilities to position her company in the face of future competition, the high-tech industry federation, Agoria, commented following the announcement by Proximus of a plan including 1,900 layoffs and 1,250 recruitments. “It’s a normal reaction by a CEO preparing her company for future difficulties,” Agoria Director Marc Lambotte told the Belga news agency. He pointed to the competition from elsewhere in Europe that Proximus faces and the situation on the domestic market, where a fourth operator has been…

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Particle counters to fight filter fraud from 2020

Particle counters to fight filter fraud from 2020

Flemish Mobility Minister Ben Weyts and Brussels Minister for Road Safety Bianca Debaets presented on Monday the new particle counters to be used in Belgium against particle-filter fraud. All auto inspection centres will need to be equipped with the new meters by 2020 to enable them to measure particles contained in exhaust gases. The choice of meter was preceded by a vast survey by the Group of businesses licensed to conduct auto checks and to issue licenses, GOCA. From 1 July to 31 December 2018, various types of technology were…

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Record number of passengers at Ryanair in 2018 despite social conflicts

Record number of passengers at Ryanair in 2018 despite social conflicts

The low-cost carrier, Ryanair, announced on Thursday that it transported 139.2 million passengers in 2018, setting a new record despite being hit by strikes and flight cancellations. This was an 8% increase on the 2017 tally of 129 million – its previous record – but not enough to unseat Lufthansa, the parent company of Brussels Airlines, from the top slot in Europe. The Irish company, which achieved double-digit annualised passenger increases in the last four months of 2018, also indicated that the rate of occupancy of its planes for the…

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Molenbeek mayor calls for collective effort for next end-of-year celebrations

Molenbeek mayor calls for collective effort for next end-of-year celebrations

Molenbeek Mayor Catherine Moureaux on Tuesday stressed the need “for the authorities to take steps to best guarantee the safety of citizens at the next end-of-year celebrations.” She was reacting to the disturbances that occurred on the night of Sunday to Monday at the Place des Etangs noirs and the fire that damaged three cars and two facades on Rue Ribaucourt in Molenbeek-Saint-Jean. Catherine Moureaux said she intended to “do everything to make sure the authors of these depredations are not left with any sense of impunity”. She also thanked…

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Changes that will affect your personal finances in 2019

Changes that will affect your personal finances in 2019

The New Year will bring with it a number of change that will all feel in our back pockets. Some of the changes will leave us a little richer, while other will leave us a little poorer. Flandersnews.be provides summary of the most import changes. he price of beer will rise from 1 January with the country’s biggest brewer AB InBev set to increase the price it charges supermarkets and the hospitality industry for its products. They can decide themselves whether they pass on the increase to their customers. An…

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