The Benelux comprises three founding fathers of the EU, namely Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg. Located in the centre of Europe, the Benelux is one of the most commercially attractive regions in Europe for foreign direct and indirect investment.
A growing number of Chinese parties are investing in Europe, or use Europe as a base for investments in the Americas, Africa and even Asia. A “holding company” in one of the Benelux countries is generally advisable to centralise the investments and manage the same through one holding company. If properly structured, the introduction of a Benelux holding company should not result in additional taxation and may even lead to reduced overall taxes.
The Benelux countries have an extensive network of bilateral investment treaties (BITs) from which, in principle, all Benelux individuals and companies incorporated in the Benelux can benefit. The majority of these BITs have extra features that make them the most beneficial worldwide. Most BITs concluded by the Benelux states also allow for protection of indirect investments and usually apply a more investor-friendly dispute settlement clause than others BITs.
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Carola van den Bruinhorst is a partner at Loyens & Loeff. She can be contacted at +852 3763 9300 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thierry Lohest is also a partner at Loyens & Loeff. He can be contacted at +352 466 230 216 or by e-mail at email@example.com