Fakta about Belgium

Facts about Belgium

1. Beer: There are over 800 different types of beer brewed in Belgium. An average Belgian consumes 150 liters of beer per year. The world’s first beer academy opened in 1999 in Herk-de-Stad, Belgium

2. Education: Belgium is one of the few countries in the world where schooling is compulsory until the age of 18

3. Chocolate: Belgium produces 220,000 tons of chocolate per year, which equates to 22 kg per capita. The world-famous ‘pralines’ were invented by Swiss Jean Neuhaus in Brussels in 1912. Brussels Airport is the world’s largest chocolate retailer (800 tons per year)

4. BMI: The Body Mass Index was invented between 1830 and 1850 by Belgian scientist Adolphe Quételet and is still used today to indicate a person’s ideal weight

5. The saxophone: The saxophone was invented in 1846 by Belgian instrument maker Adolphe Sax (who also gave his name to the instrument)

Fact: Tintin originated in Belgium
Attribution: Dylan Parker – Flickr.com

Fact: The cartoon character Tintin was created by Belgian artist Hergé

 

6. Tintin: The comic book character Tintin was created by Belgian artist Hergé (whose real name was Georges Prosper Remi). More than 200 million copies of the ‘Adventures of Tintin’ album series have been sold

7. Citizenships: Next to Canada, Belgium is the country in the world that grants the most new citizenships every year

8. UNESCO: There are 11 locations in Belgium which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site

9. Regions: Belgium is divided into 3 regions: Flanders, Wallonia and Brussels. Flanders and Wallonia are the largest regions and are each divided into 5 provinces, which in turn are divided into municipalities. Brussels is the capital region

10. Language disputes: Although the official language border between Dutch, French and German was established in 1963, there has always been a language dispute between the French and Flemish-speaking Belgians. The reasons for the dispute are not only linguistic, but also social, political, economic and historical

Fact: Adolphe Sax, who invented the saxophone, came from the town of Dinant in Belgium
Attribution: Dennis Jarvis – Flickr.com | Romanm + Nabokov – Wikipedia.org

The inventor of the saxophone, Adolphe Sax, came from the town of Dinant in Belgium

Geographic facts

  • Location: Western Europe. Between France and the Netherlands with a coastline facing the North Sea
  • Country borders: France (620 km), Germany (167 km), Luxembourg (148 km) and the Netherlands (450 km)
  • Coastline: 66,5 km
  • Climate: Temperate. Mild winters and cool summers. Generally humid and cloudy with a lot of precipitation
  • Landscape: Flat coastal plains in the northeast, rolling hills in the central part of the country and forested mountainous landscape in the southeast (Ardennes)
  • Lowest point: 0 m (North Sea)
  • Highest point: 694 m (Botrange)
  • Natural resources: Building materials, silica sand and carbonates
  • Largest city: Brussels
  • Capital city: Brussels
  • Total area (square kilometers): 30.530,00 (2021)
  • Land areas (km2): 22.780,52 (2015)
  • Urban areas (km2): 7.730,88 (2015)
  • Agricultural land (km2): 13.656,70 (2021)
  • Agricultural area (% of total area): 45,10 (2021)
  • Forest area (% of land area): 22,76 (2021)
  • Plant species (higher), endangered: 0,00 (2018)
  • CO2 emissions (metric tons per capita): 7,40 (2020)

Demographic facts

Population

  • Population density (people per km2 total area): 2.121.992,00 (2023)
  • Population of largest city: 1,16 (2023)
  • Population growth (annual %): 11.822.592,00 (2023)
  • Population, total: 12,30 (2022)
  • Population growth in urban areas (annual %): 1,20 (2023)
  • Population in urban areas (% of total population): 84,94 (2022)
  • Population in rural areas (% of total population): 1,81 (2023)
  • Population growth in rural areas (annual %): -0,80 (2023)
  • Etniske grupper: 58% Flemish, 31% Walloon, 11% mixed or other
  • Sprog: 60% Dutch (Flemish), 40% French, less than 1% German (all three are official languages)
  • Religioner: 75% Roman Catholics, 25% others (incl. Protestants)
  • Net immigration: 6,34 (2022)

Birth and death rates

  • Fertility rate, total (births per woman): 1,53 (2022)
  • Birth rate, gross (per 1,000 inhabitants): 9,80 (2022)
  • Teenage mothers (% of women aged 15-19 who have had children or are pregnant): 10,28 (2019)
  • Death rate, gross (per 1,000 people): 10,00 (2022)
  • Life expectancy at birth, women (years): 83,90 (2022)
  • Life expectancy at birth, men (years): 79,60 (2022)
  • Life expectancy at birth, all (years): 81,70 (2022)
  • Mortality caused by traffic accidents (per 100,000 inhabitants): 46,94 (2022)
  • Mortality, women (per 1,000 adult women): 77,97 (2022)
  • Mortality, male (per 1,000 adult males): 11,80 (2019)
  • Suicide rate, women (per 100,000 women): 24,90 (2019)
  • Mortality, infant (per 1,000 live births): 23.999,00 (2023)

Work, income and education

  • Wage earners, total (% of total labor force): n/a
  • Income share of the highest 10%: 21,90 (2021)
  • Income share of the lowest 10%: 3,60 (2021)
  • Unemployment, total (% of total labor force): 5,53 (2023)
  • Labor force, total: 5.432.007,00 (2023)
  • Workforce with basic education (% of the workforce): 26,62 (2023)
  • Labor force with medium education (% of labor force): 56,71 (2023)
  • Number of poor cf. national poverty limits (% of the population): 0,20 (2022)
  • Proportion of the population with moderate or severe food insecurity (%): 5,80 (2021)
  • School enrolments, primary school (gross %): 101,82 (2021)
  • Youth unemployment, all young people (% of total labor force aged 15 - 24): 98,19 (2023)
  • Young people not in education, employment or training, total (% of all young people): 6,70 (2023)
  • Literacy/literacy, total adults (% of population over 15): 2,00 (2018)

    Spending

  • Household (and NPIS) consumption expenditure (US$): 387.861.739.033,85 (2023)
  • Electricity consumption (kWh per inhabitant): 7.709,12 (2014)
  • Inhabitants using the Internet (% of the population): 94,01 (2022)
  • Mobile subscriptions (per 100 people): 5,80 (2019)
  • Number of smokers, total (over 15 years): 23,40 (2020)
  • Alcohol consumption per capita (litres of pure alcohol, expected estimates, +15 years): 16,08 (2023)

Business and tourism

  • Employers, total (% of total labor force): 3,65 (2022)
  • New companies (number of registrations): 20,53 (2021)
  • New businesses (new registrations per 1,000 inhabitants aged 15 - 64): 47.171,00 (2022)
  • Listed companies, total: 117,00 (2015)
  • Business conditions (0 = lowest grade to 100 = highest grade): 3.612,00 (2021)
  • International tourism, number of arrivals: 2.584.000,00 (2020)
  • International tourism, number of departures: 5.850.000,00 (2020)
  • Railway lines (total route kilometers): 3.612,00 (2021)
  • Railways, number of passengers transported (million passenger-kilometres): 6.970,00 (2021)

Health

  • Hospital beds (per 1,000 inhabitants): 5,58 (2019)
  • Suicide rate, men (per 100,000 men): 3,10 (2022)
  • Nurses and midwives (per 1,000 inhabitants): 6,26 (2021)
  • Doctors (per 1,000 inhabitants): 382,64 (2021)
  • Prevalence of HIV, total (% of population aged 15 - 49): 137,82 (2023)

Facts Belgium's economy

GDP and GNI

  • BNP (US$): 74,99 (2019)
  • GDP growth (annual %): 632.216.577.075,11 (2023)
  • GDP per capita (US$): 1,37 (2023)
  • GDP, KPP (US$): 53.475,29 (2023)
  • BNI (US$): 832.972.050.437,14 (2023)
  • GNI growth (annual %): 646.019.915.336,45 (2023)
  • Gross savings (% of GDP): -0,01 (2022)

Inflation, interest rates and consumer prices

  • Deposit rate (%): 15,46 (2021)
  • Lending rate (%): 44,50 (2019)
  • Inflation, consumer prices (annual %): 116.594.493.620,39 (2023)
  • Consumer Price Index (2010 = 100): 137,82 (2023)

Trade and production

  • Trade (% of GDP): 174,30 (2023)
  • Vareeksport (US$): 562.439.000.000,00 (2023)
  • Vareimport (US$): 546.765.000.000,00 (2023)
  • Food exports (% of merchandise exports): 11,91 (2023)
  • Food imports (% of goods imports): 9,60 (2023)
  • Food Production Index (2004 - 2006 = 100): 100,00 (2022)
  • Index of animal production (2004 - 2006 = 100): 102,29 (2022)

Industry

  • Industry (including construction), value added (% of GDP): 25,21 (2023)
  • Industry (including construction), value added (US$): 18,44 (2023)
  • Industry, value added (% of GDP): 11,88 (2023)
  • Industry, value added (US$): 75.079.400.923,14 (2023)

Military

  • Armed forces, total: 24.000,00 (2020)
  • Military expenditure (% of GDP): 1,18 (2022)
  • Military Expenditure (US$): 6.867.022.305,99 (2022)

Others

  • Current health expenditure (% of GDP): 15,46 (2021)
  • Labor tax and contribution (% of company profit): 4,05 (2023)
  • Development Assistance (ODA) received per capita (US$): 0,45 (2017)
  • Social contributions (% of income): 35,45 (2022)