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Welcome To Belgium
Country number
203
Selected MR Agencies

An Introduction to Belgium

The Kingdom of Belgium holds the headquarters of the European Union, in Brussels, and other international organisations such as NATO. It's mostly made up of Dutch speaking Flemish people and French-speaking Walloons - around 60 and 40% of the population respectively, and tensions between these two caused much twentieth century political instability, leading to its change from a unitary to a federal state. See full country profile.

Latest Research News from Belgium

Aug 10
In Belgium, relationship marketing solutions specialist Selligent has appointed former Salesforce COO John Hernandez as Chief Executive Officer, replacing founder Andre Lejeune who will remain on the Board of Directors. Aug 10 2017
Jul 26
US-based social media intelligence platform Synthesio has acquired Brussels, Belgium-based Social Karma, for an undisclosed sum. Jul 26 2017


0 current Belgian jobs at present - sorry



Fast Facts
Map of Belgium
CAPITAL: Brussels
GOVERNMENT: Federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy
AREA: 30,528 sq km
POPULATION: 11,007,020 (2011 est.)
MAJOR LANGUAGE: Official Languages: Dutch, French, German.
Stone bridge, Bruges, Belgium
Stone bridge, Bruges, Belgium


Falling Flat Contests to name famous Belgians - other than cyclist Eddy Merckx and fictional detective Hercule Poirot - have long entertained British schoolchildren and - for all we know, people of all ages worldwide. Like the Swiss, the subject of similar quizzes, they have recently supplied easy answers in the world of tennis, with world no.1s and grand slam winners in Justin Henin and Kim Clijsters. But before that, 16th century cartographer Gerardus Mercator - he of the projection - and a number of painting's great masters also lived in the territory which is now Belgium. We should also give an honourable mention to action hero Jean Claude van Damme, the Muscles from Brussels, and another van Damme, Ivo, a double medal winner at the Montreal Olympics (silver, 800m and 1500m), tragically killed in a car accident the same year aged just 22.

There, we've done our bit to spoil that particular brand of harmless playground fun. There are also jokes about how flat Belgium and Holland are - and indeed, the Signal de Botrange, Belgium's highest point, is not all that lofty at 694 metres (2,277 ft) - though the forested plateaux of the Ardennes is rugged and rocky. In the final analysis, however, we can forgive Belgium for all this and even, almost, for the EU, because of its beer and chocolates. Now maybe that's why the athletes have taken a while to come through, and why its most famous footballer (Jean-Marie Pfaff) is a goalkeeper?

A little More Knowledge?
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Belgium in Profile

The Kingdom of Belgium holds the headquarters of the European Union, in Brussels, and other international organisations such as NATO. It's mostly made up of Dutch speaking Flemish people and French-speaking Walloons - around 60 and 40% of the population respectively, and tensions between these two caused much twentieth century political instability, leading to its change from a unitary to a federal state.

The country formed a union with the Netherlands prior to revolution and independence in 1830-31. The siting of many wars there in the 16th and 17th centuries and particularly the western front of the Great War 1914-18 have given it the nickname of the battleground of Europe.Belgium enjoys a strongly globalised economy and a highly productive workforce. If there's one thing it's not too hot on it's the environment - relatively high population, early industrialisation, its location and a lack of political effort in this direction have given it pollution issues - it has been ranked last in the EU for water quality and for overall environmental performance in studies in recent years.

Some Business and General Info

GDP: $413.3 bn (2011 est.); $37,736 per capita

Religions Roman Catholic 87%, other (includes Protestant, Jewish, and Muslim) 13% (2000)

Currency: Euro

Telephone Code: + 32

Overview of the Research Industry

MR Association(s):

Belgian Federation of Market Research Institutes (FEBELMAR)

Belgium is the 20th largest research market in the world, and the 11th largest in Europe. 80 percent of MR turnover comes from domestic clients and 20 percent from international. According to the ESOMAR Global Prices Study 2012 the country was the 21st most expensive for carrying out research.
Source: ESOMAR

Overview of Trade and Industry

The first continental country with an industrial revolution, in the early nineteenth century, Belgium enjoys a good location, a good transport network and in consequence a strong, diversified and competitive economy - this despite having no real remaining natural resources. Service business accounts for three quarters of GDP.

Belgium's exports account for more than two thirds of GNP, and it's heavily dependent on trade, especially with other EU countries. This means it has been affected, of course, by the recent financial crisis - and with public debt at around 99% of GDP its exposure is considerable - however it has a tradition of balanced budgets and income equality is high.

2011 exports were $332 bn - mostly of things like machinery, chemicals and metals / metal products, but also including foodstuffs and finished diamonds. Germany took 19.1% of the country's very substantial exports in 2009; France 17%, the Netherlands 12.2% and the UK 7.2%. Imports the same year were perfectly balanced at $332.4 bn, with the Netherlands the biggest supplier in 2009 (19.1%) and Germany (16.4%) and France (11.3%) following up - raw materials (including uncut diamonds), pharmaceuticals, foodstuffs and oil products made up a good proportion of this.

My view
from...
Belgium
Researchers Talk!
Have your say!
If you are a researcher based in Belgium, in whatever capacity, then we would love to hear from you!

Email me:
laurence@mrweb.com

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Your views on working in MR in Belgium? Please get in touch!