Taking stock of the Silver Economy in Wallonia
The BEP is developing a new business park over 13 hectares in Bouge
In line with its most recent initiatives (Ecolys®, for example, which focuses on green building), the bureau is continuing to opt for specialist business parks. For the Bouge venue, the theme of health has been chosen and, more specifically, health products and services linked to an ageing population (referred to as the silver economy). This choice is the product of a scrutiny of Namur’s positioning, the presence of key players in the sector, and the economic development prospects of this industry. The park will be called ‘Care-YS’.
Project launch event
To bring together key Walloon players from the sector (private companies, associations, public bodies) to exchange ideas, but also to enable Namur, Capital of Wallonia, to refine its position on the theme of silver economy, the BEP organised a seminar morning in Créagora from 8.30 am to 1 pm on Tuesday 25 September 2018.
Around one hundred participants attended the presentation of the results of studies carried out by the BEP and its subcontractors on the silver economy, an international and regional challenge the extent of which Namur’s regional authorities fully appreciated in the local community.
Ageing well in an ageing society is a strategic issue for the Province of Namur in the 2018‑2024 Contrat d’Avenir III (future contract on social cohesion for Wallonia), and is the focus of ambitious projects that were presented at this event.
UNamur, Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech (ULg) and UCL shared the research and solutions they have developed through their innovative approaches. These are numerous, diverse and transdisciplinary, with the aim of meeting ageing people’s needs in the context of their higher life expectancy. The BioWin Competitiveness Cluster supplemented information through the support that the Walloon clusters can provide to companies and the scientific world in order to develop new products and services.
Mr Frédéric Serrière, International Expert in Population Ageing, Founder of the Age Economy think tank and Strategic Adviser to large companies, shed light on the future sectors of this industry and the prerequisites for designing an optimal offer to attract users.
The session was boosted by the presence of the Mayor of Namur and the representatives of Wallonia’s Minister-President and the Minister for Urban Planning and industrial zones, with the regional authorities supporting the growth of this sector (namely through financial support).
And what now?
The Care-YS project is now in the final stages of land use planning and design for the infrastructure, with these spaces slated to be available in 2022. The park is intended to be a hub for key players, the beating heart of a wider network in the Province of Namur and Wallonia.
In the short term, an events programme will now be launched by the BEP for the benefit of Namur-based companies that can take these opportunities forward.
about the theme of silver economy – Coralie Paradis – firstname.lastname@example.org
about Care-Ys – Stéphanie Bonmariage – email@example.com