You are here

The Importance of US Companies in Belgium

US companies are essential to the Belgian economy. Through our Importance of US Companies in Belgium series of reports, we examine their contribution in terms of job creation, innovation and local community engagement, among other themes. In 2015, total US investment in Belgium amounted to $45 billion. The US remains the largest source of foreign direct investment in Belgium – indeed, in 2014, 44 of 198 (22%) new FDI projects in Belgium came from the US.

Employment and Fiscal Contribution

This investment translates into jobs in the local economy. The 900 majority-owned US groups active in Belgium directly employ more than 127,000 people, which represents 4.5% of total private sector employment in the country. The US Top 50 – the largest US companies in Belgium as measured by employment – directly employed 81,750 people and contributed more than €1.7 billion to the Belgian State in taxes and social security in 2015.

US Top 50

US Top 50 Companies in Belgium - Ranked by Employees in 2015

Company Employees   Company Employees
1. ManpowerGroup 13,308   26. Merck & Co (MSD) 948
2. Johnson & Johnson (Janssen Pharmaceutica) 5,099   27. Aleris 948
3. McDonald's 3,347   28. Johnson Controls 918
4. Nike 2,996   29. Pepsico 909
5. Temco (Euroclean) 2,673   30. Baxalta 878
6. Robert Half 2,667   31. General Electric 859
7. Mohawk (Unilin) 2,666   32. Carlson (Radisson, Wagonlit Travel) 847
8. Balta 2,576   33. FedEx 834
9. Coca-Cola 2,569   34. CEVA 827
10. Mondelēz International 2,233   35. VF Europe 816
11. Paccar (DAF Trucks) 2,157   36. Monsanto 803
12. ExxonMobil Petroleum & Chemical 2,145   37. Eastman (Solutia, Taminco) 779
13. Procter & Gamble 2,098   38. McKesson 762
14. Pfizer 2,068   39. DuPont 751
15. Baxter 1,776   40. ON Semiconductor 722
16. Hewlett-Packard 1,728   41. WhiteWave (Alpro) 714
17. IBM 1,555   42. Ford 711
18. TE Connectivity 1,214   43. XPO 708
19. Caterpillar 1,195   44. Danaher 651
20. Cargill 1,157   45. Kellogg’s 643
21. UPS 1,142   46. The Bank of New York Mellon 639
22. Tenneco 1,104   47. 3M 632
23. Estée Lauder 1,074   48. Dow Corning Europe 620
24. Aviapartner 1,060   49. Honeywell 610
25. Accenture 1,004    50. Cisco Systems 610

manufacturing

US companies provide 12.1% of manufacturing jobs in Belgium, and nearly half of US employment in Belgium is in industrial companies. Through their supply chains and distribution channels, manufacturing companies also generate a significant amount of indirect employment. As a result of advanced automation and other new technologies, manufacturing output continues to increase while at the same time manufacturing employment is declining – in Belgium and other industrial countries. With this report, AmCham Belgium would like to encourage an open discussion about the future of industry in Belgium and the associated opportunities. The report includes a showcase of US companies with industrial operations in Belgium.

 

Download

R&D and Innovation

US companies contribute significantly to the success of Belgium’s innovation-driven economy. They account for approximately one-third of total private sector R&D investment and directly employ more than 5,000 people in R&D in Belgium. Belgium is an attractive location for R&D activities, and US companies benefit from the strong collaboration with universities and public research institutions, leading to the development and launch of many new products and services. This publication showcases a selection of products designed or developed in Belgium by US companies.

 

Download

Community Impact

US companies are also actively engaged in the local community through a vast array of projects which help advance overall societal well-being . This is what we call Community Impact. There are direct community benefits from proximity to US companies – 81% of projects are organized in the company’s immediate surroundings. Projects are well-matched to societal needs, with a particular emphasis on youth issues, and they are increasingly linked to the company’s core business.

Download