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   Belgium Country Guide


Flag of Belgium Belgium became independent from the Netherlands in 1830; it was occupied by Germany during World Wars I and II. The country prospered in the past half century as a modern, technologically advanced European state and member of NATO and the EU. Political divisions between the Dutch-speaking Flemings of the north and the French-speaking Walloons of the south have led in recent years to constitutional amendments granting these regions formal recognition and autonomy. Its capital, Brussels, is home to numerous international organizations including the EU and NATO.



Map of Belgium Full Name: Kingdom of Belgium
Area: 30,528 sq km sq km (land: 30,278 sq km, water: 250 sq km)
Population: 10,449,361 (July 2014 est.)
Capital City: Brussels

People: Fleming 58%, Walloon 31%, mixed or other 11%
Language: Dutch (official) 60%, French (official) 40%, German (official) less than 1%, legally bilingual (Dutch and French)
Religion: Roman Catholic 75%, Protestant or other 25%

Government Type: Federal parliamentary democracy under a constitutional monarch
Chief of State: King PHILIPPE (since 21 July 2013); Heir Apparent Princess ELISABETH, daughter of the monarch
Head of Government: Prime Minister Elio DI RUPO (since 6 December 2011); Deputy Prime Minister Alexander DE CROO (since 22 October 2012); Deputy Prime Minister Joelle MILQUET (since 20 March 2008); Deputy Prime Minister Laurette ONKELINX (since 30 December 2008); Deputy Prime Minister Didier REYNDERS (since 30 December 2008); Depurty Prime Minister Johan VANDE LANOTTE (since i6 December 2011); Deputy Prime Minister Pieter DE CREM (since 5 March 2013)

GDP: $US 421.7 billion (2013 est.)
GDP per Capita: $US 37,800 (2013 est.)
Inflation: 1.3% (2013 est.)
Unemployment: 8.8% (2013 est.)
Industries: Engineering and metal products, motor vehicle assembly, transportation equipment, scientific instruments, processed food and beverages, chemicals, basic metals, textiles, glass, petroleum
Currency: Euro (€ - EUR)

Member of EU: Yes



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Info provided by the CIA World Factbook
Updated 2/2015
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