Belgium (Modern World Nations) by George Wingfield

By George Wingfield

Mendacity at the coast of the North Sea in northwestern Europe, with Germany to its east, the Netherlands to its north and France to its south and west, Belgium is found on the center of 1 of Europe's such a lot hugely industrialized areas. including its friends the Netherlands and Luxembourg, this workforce of 3 international locations is noted jointly as Benelux. Belgium has a inhabitants of approximately 10 million humans in a space of 11,700 sq. miles (30,000 sq. kilometers) and contains French, Dutch, and German as its respectable languages.Belgium was once one of many founding individuals of the eu Union (EU), and Brussels is successfully the unofficial capital of Europe - domestic to the eu Parliament of the ecu Union and the headquarters of NATO (of which Belgium and the us are either participants) in addition to quite a few different foreign companies. A full-color research of the background, humans, tradition, geography, setting, and economic climate of this pivotal kingdom and position it performs in modern day worldwide politics are highlighted in "Belgium".

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After the fall of the Roman Empire, the Franks dominated this region and what is now the Netherlands. This Germanic tribe from the Rhine region controlled the area for several hundred years dur-­ ing the early Middle Ages. These invaders settled mostly in the north, 29 30 Belgium and it was here that their Franconian dialect became the basis of the Dutch language. This replaced Latin as the region’s mother tongue, although Latin developed into French, which was spoken in the regions farther south.

Next, we should also look at the subna-­ tional level and the complexities of government in a federal state that is divided by language in a way that is unlike nearly any other country. Belgium has four levels of subnational gov-­ ernment. First is community government, which is divided into Dutch speaking, French speaking and German speaking. Second is regional government, for Flanders, Wallonia, and the ­Brussels-­Capital region. Third is the provincial government of the 10 provinces. The fourth, and lowest, level is communal government, which comprises 589 municipalities or com-­ munes.

Currently, of 150 total representatives, 88 are part of the ­Dutch-­language group, which consists of the representatives from the Flemish areas. Another 62 are part of the ­ French-­language group, which consists of the representa-­ tives from the ­ French-­language and ­ German-­language areas. For the representatives from ­ Brussels-­Halle-­Vilvoorde, the language in which they take their oath as a representative deter-­ mines the language group to which they ­belong. Because of the Belgian Constitution, both linguistic com-­ munities are granted equal powers in parliament.

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