Brussels, Belgium

Contact: Kathleen Davisters
Year: 2018

GDS-Index Category Breakdown

Category Total
Environmental Performance 64%
Social Performance 79%
Supplier Performance 62%
Destination Management Performance 83%

Destination Highlights

Hectares of green area per 100 000 population


As Europe’s leading terminal for international high-speed trains, Brussels is becoming a greener place to meet. On arrival, efficient underground, bus, tram, and bicycle rental network takes over to transport you anywhere in Brussels. The city was voted No.1 sustainable city in Europe in terms of environmental policy in the European Green City Index. Various recognitions of an environmental management system is open to Brussels companies. It is one of the greenest cities in Europe with 28 m² of green space per inhabitant and is one of the most active cities in the area of passive construction with more than 265.000m² of exemplary buildings. In addition, the Brussels-Capital Region focuses strongly on the circular economy (PREC programme), good food and the fight against waste (Good Food Brussels). Brussels is leader in waste management and No.1 in Europe in recycling of packaging waste. As of 2018, the most polluting vehicles will be progressively banned from the Brussels-Capital Region as part of the Low Emission Zone (LEZ) strategy.

Energy sourced from renewables
City traffic congestion level
Waste sent to landfill

Brussels is a world city. With three official languages and 183 nationalities speaking more than 100 different languages, Brussels is a diverse, cosmopolitan city and a magnetic centre for economic migration. With 62% foreign-born residents, Brussels ranks second only to Dubai in the World Migration Report. According to the 2016 ranking of consultants Mercer, Brussels is the 21st most pleasant city in the world in terms of quality of living out of 450, well ahead of Paris or London and 14th in Europe. The Mercer survey rated Brussels as one of the most pleasant places to live on the European continent and also one of its most inexpensive cities Brussels is the capital city of a country that appears consistently towards the top of international rankings such as: least corrupt countries, least gender inequality, etc.

Corruption Perception ranking
World Bank Inequality Index Score (Lower score represents lower inequality)
Gender Inequality Index ranking

Brussels is steadily becoming a more eco-friendly destination, and it shows. Cleantech events now taking place in Brussels include the Annual Carbon Capture and Storage Summit, Renewable Energy Law Conference and Sustainable Energy Week. 25 % of all Brussels hotel rooms hold an official eco-certification and are easily accessible with public transport. Brussels CVB works actively to inspire the city’s meetings industry to go green. Brussels plans to become an even greener place to meet, aiming to be the "Green city of Europe" by 2024 through a coordinated plan to make the city a truly sustainable destination.

City's hotels easily accessible by public transport to/from congress and exhibition centres
PCOs and DMCs have a written sustainability policy
Exhibition centres have sustainability certification

Together with other local authorities, CVB has defined five key centres of excellence prominent in the Brussels area. With its world-famous universities, high concentration of associations and international companies/ research & development organisations/ decision-makers and proactive supporting bodies/ Brussels is a pivotal centre of excellence for, among other sectors, sustainability and clean technologies. The city of Brussels aims to maintain this innovative momentum and now offers a full support programme for congresses and fairs that develop the capital’s reputation within this centre of excellence. Furthermore, is a key player of the Brussels meetings industry. takes part in various development projects involving the Brussels-Capital Region : environment and mobility policies, green key certifications program, support programmes, etc.

Yes No
Has the CVB established and is implementing a destination sustainability strategy?
Does the destination regularly measure and report on sustainable destination progress?
Does the CVB support or lead local sustainability training for cities MICE industry?
Does the CVB support or local authorities provide incentives or funding for organisations wanting to gain sustainability certification or issue a sustainability reports
Does the CVB provide free or subsidized public transport passes for major conventions?
Does CVB/DMO provide clients with ideas and resources to support the local community?

Blog Articles

Other Destination Rankings for 2018