TLScontact is proud to announce the opening of new visa application centres for the Belgian government. On Wednesday 15 September 2021, we started welcoming the first Belgian visa applicants to new centres in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East and Asia. This brings to 24 the number of visa centres we now manage on behalf of Belgium around the world.
Following a procurement process concluded at the beginning of 2021, TLScontact won the contract to manage visa applications for the Belgian government in 24 locations around the world, 16 of which are located in Africa, four in the Middle East, three in Europe and one in Asia. Since we already had a significant presence on the African continent, this represented only four new premises. Our other centres have undergone some reorganisation and renovation, to allow us to represent several government clients at the same location, while ensuring that we respect the relevant regulations of each.
DIVERSIFYING OUR ACTIVITIES
It has also been agreed that five of our centres will offer a document legalisation service for the Belgian government. The local population will thus be able to benefit from the support of TLScontact teams to legalise local documents for use in Belgium, a step that is sometimes necessary to complete their visa application.
Furthermore, in some centres, we will also receive visa applications for Luxembourg, as well as for certain other European countries, in accordance with bilateral agreements.
OPENING OUR CENTRES ON TIME
Preparations for the new centres began in a complicated environment in the spring of 2021, when the effects of a new wave of Covid-19 were being felt in many countries. Work was carried out under undeniably complex conditions, balancing health measures, restrictions and new periods of confinement. However, thanks to the efforts of our local teams and strong coordination between the various internal and external stakeholders, we completed the project and kept our commitments to our client, opening all the centres on time.
According to Antoine Rault, Client Director: “We thank the Belgian government for its renewed confidence in TLScontact and are delighted to open these new centres, many of which are in Sub-Saharan Africa. It is clearly a region with very high potential, where the World Bank expects strong economic and demographic growth, despite the effects of Covid-19. We can therefore expect a continuing increase in trade and tourism to other regions of the world in the coming years. We will be ready to help our government clients manage the accompanying increase in demand for visas and welcome visa applicants in the best possible conditions.”
STRENGTHENING OUR PRESENCE IN AFRICA
We opened our first visa application centres on the African continent in 2008, with a presence first in the Maghreb, and then throughout Sub-Saharan Africa. Since then, we have steadily increased our presence in the region thanks to a deeper understanding of the market in each country, and to our strong local teams, who are able to adapt to different contexts and provide the best possible support to our government clients, whatever the local complexities. It is this know-how that has allowed the successful completion of this project with the Belgian government, despite the current uncertain context.