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DHL should stay says poll

Published on 22/09/2004

22 September 2004

BRUSSELS – The international courier express firm DHL should stay at Brussels National Airport, even if it means sleepless nights for local residents, according to a poll published on Wednesday.

The daily free newspaper Metro asked readers whether they felt jobs or the sleep of nearby residents should determine the outcome of the debate surrounding DHL’s Zaventem operations.

DHL wants to expand its number of night flights from 25,000 to 34,000 by 2012.

The move would create at least 1,000 new jobs and DHL has hinted strongly that it might pull out of Belgium totally if it does not get the green light for its plans.

In the poll, which Metro underlined was non-scientific, 61.5 percent of readers said concerns over job losses should win out over local residents worried about noise.

Metro published some of the comments it received.

One reader said while noise nuisance for residents was a problem, the issue had been inflated for political ends.

On the opposing side, another reader wrote, “It’s a shame to note that the pseudo-democracy in which we live is more and more conditioned by multinationals who dictate their laws to our government.”

On Wednesday afternoon, Belgium’s different layers of government, both federal, regional and local, were still arguing over whether or not to allow DHL to expand its operations at Zaventem.

[Copyright Expatica 2004]

Subject: Belgian news