Looking to expand outside of the European Union?

The Brussels-Capital Region offers a subsidy for canvassing in markets outside of the European Union.

Which markets?

The canvassing must target:
  • Either new markets, i.e. markets in which the company's sales do not exceed 10% of its total turnover;
  • Or declining markets, i.e. markets in which the company's sales have declined in two consecutive years and by at least 20% in the last two years.

Which expenditure is eligible?

The subsidy applies to costs relating to:
  • Business travel undertaken for market reconnaissance, to select importers or intermediaries or to make contact with foreign agents or buyers;
  • Taking part in trade missions, conferences, contact days or seminars which may have a positive impact on the company's export business;
  • The assistance of a third party in order to canvass on foreign markets. The third party should have a minimum of two years' professional experience and be able to demonstrate their reputation by providing a list of legitimate references. It should be independent from the recipient of the subsidy;
  • Registration, accreditation and certification on foreign markets for the purposes of marketing products or services.
This expenditure covers costs relating to a maximum of two people taking part in each mission, provided these two people perform complementary roles within the company. The Region's intervention will be calculated on the basis of economy class travel (business class or equivalent supplements are not eligible for an intervention).
If the company operates in the audio-visual or publishing sector, no intervention will be granted for foreign travel in the context of the actual production of its films or works.
The duration of trips is limited to 10 consecutive nights.

What intervention could you receive?

Subsidy for canvassing outside of the EU [1]
Percentage of the subsidy 50% of the costs
Estimated minimum costs €2,000
Maximum subsidy €20,000 / calendar year
Maximum number of subsidies 5 subsidies / calendar year


[1] The sums stated exclude VAT.

What are the payment terms for the subsidy?

To request the payment of the subsidy, the recipient must provide the following documents within 90 days of the end of the canvassing mission:
  • A detailed report on the trip taken, in particular describing local contacts made, the prospects for opportunities identified and the next steps to be taken;
  • The travel ticket(s) and proof of payment of this (or them) from a company account;
  • The invoice(s) relating to hotel stay(s) and proof of payment of this (or them) from a company account;
  • The documentary evidence of any other eligible actual expenditure (invoices and proofs of payment);
  • In the event of assistance from a third party, the CV of this person and a list of references.
These documents should be submitted to the Direction des Aides aux Entreprises, for the attention of your case manager.
The company will receive a letter specifying the actual value of the subsidy, as well as a claim declaration. It should complete this and return it to the Accounts Department in order for the subsidy to be paid.

How do I make an application?

The application must be made no later than 10 calendar days before the start of the trip, for each trip to the country in question. It must include:
  • The duly completed and signed special form [2] ;
  • A detailed description of the project ;
  • A supporting argument by the company.

Once the company has applied for a subsidy, it is permitted to continue its project without waiting for the decision. If unsuccessful, the company will have to bear the costs incurred itself.

[2] In particular, you should outline your business plan for promoting foreign trade of which the initiative for which you are applying for a subsidy is a part.

Download the application form and annexes

When completing the application form, we recommend that you save it to your computer before opening it. That way, you will not risk losing the data you enter.

To complete the form, you must have Adobe Acrobat Reader version 8.1.2 or later. To download the latest version, click here.
If you are using a Mac, ensure that you open the file with Adobe Reader (and not the Mac PDF reader).

PDFDownload the application form
PDF Download the list of unit rates regarding living expenditures
N.B. When the form opens, you will only see 2 pages on the screen. You need to tick the subsidy you are interested in on the second page in order for the form to adjust to the subsidy requested.
After having ticked the subsidy requested, you will see the following pages appear:
  • Part I: company's contact details and financial information;
  • Part II: information about the project in relation to which you are applying for a financial subsidy;
  • Part III: declaration on honour, to be signed, testifying that the information provided is accurate.
The form and annexes should be returned to:
  • by post :

Administration of Economy and Employment, Direction des Aides aux Entreprises
Boulevard du Jardin Botanique, 20
1035 Brussels

  • or by e-mail :

incitantexport@mrbc.irisnet.be, not forgetting to sign the last page.
If you send your application by e-mail, please do not send a copy by post.

Contact Contact

Brussels Economy and Employment
Direction des Aides aux Entreprises
Bd du Jardin botanique, 20
1035 Brussels
EContact form
T02 800 36 02
T02 800 34 86

Brussels Invest & Export
E info@brusselsinvestexport.be
T02 800 40 62
T02 800 40 00

On the French or Dutch page, you can download
  • the regulations,
  • available brochures and
  • annual reports on grants for companies
in French or in Dutch.