Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba wants to build new halls at Liège airport, an information meeting is taking place this evening

In the case of Alibaba and its logistics subsidiary Cainiao, an information meeting prior to the impact study will take place this evening (6:30 p.m.) at the passenger terminal of Liege Airport. The Chinese e-commerce giant wants to build 3 new warehouses in Grâce-Hollogne, extending the existing one.

The 33,000 square meters of the first warehouse make it possible to store the goods unloaded by 3 or 4 planes per day, then to load about sixty trucks. The permit application submitted by Alibaba for 3 additional warehouses totaling 66,000 square meters would triple this area to absorb around ten flights per day and 500 trucks.

Strong police presence expected and suspicions of registration of participants

Residents and opponents of e-commerce are on the alert. Member of the collective Stop Alibaba and Co, Niels Duchesne also denounces a slicing of the file and the way in which this information meeting is organized.

The first building was built under a permit that did not require an impact study and therefore without consultation of the population. Now, we finally consult it, but for a project that is already tied up, with already agreements at the federal level. We also wonder about the very organization of this information meeting. The federal police warned me that the police would be numerous, which could deter residents and opponents from moving. I also wonder about the fact that this meeting is done on prior registration, when health measures no longer require it.

Would it be, in his eyes, a method of filing participants by Alibaba? “We could consider it like that, yes!

Faced with these fears of local residents, mainly those in the towns of Grâce-Hollogne, Awans, Fexhe-le-Haut-Clocher and Flémalle, Alibaba highlights the impact on employment: It specifies that around 300 jobs have been created for manage the logistics in the first warehouse, and that this figure will increase to 900 when the 4 halls are operational by 2026, if all goes according to plan for the Chinese giant.

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