Wikimedia Chapters Association/Place of registration/Belgium

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The country[edit]


Main article: w:Languages of Belgium

Belgium has three official languages: Dutch (about 60% of native speaker, 70% counting also second-language speakers), French (about 40% / 90%) and German (few people). Brussels itself is officially bilingual, with both French and Dutch being spoken in the city. However, approximately 60% of the people speaks English as a foreign language.

Presence of chapters[edit]

There is currently no chapter in Belgium, but one is being planned (possibly covering also Luxembourg). This has pro and contra:

  • on one hand, an already existing chapter can help in the establishment of the WCA;
  • on the other hand, not having a chapter makes it a more neutral choice.

Even if there is no chapter, Belgium is surrounded by three contries with long-standing chapters: France, Germany, and Netherlands.


     Schengen Area      Visa-free access for non-Schengen EU member states      Visa-free access to the Schengen Area for 90 days in any half year period      Visa required to enter the Schengen Area      Visa required for transit via the Schengen Area      Visa status unknown

Belgium is a member of EU and it is in Schengen Area. Except for Russia and Ukraine, there is visa-free access to Schengen area for all countries whose chapter is already in the WCA. See visa policy in the European Union.

International organizations[edit]

Copy and paste from w:Brussels-Capital_Region#In_international_politics

Brussels has since World War II become the administrative centre of many international organizations. Notably the European Union (EU) and the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) have their main institutions in the city, along with many other international organisations such as the World Customs Organization and EUROCONTROL as well as international corporations. Brussels is third in the number of international conferences it hosts[1] also becoming one of the largest convention centres in the world.[2] The presence of the EU and the other international bodies has for example led to there being more ambassadors and journalists in Brussels than in Washington D.C.[3] International schools have also been established to serve this presence.[2] The "international community" in Brussels numbers at least 70 000 people.[4] In 2009, there were an estimated 286 lobbying consultancies known to work in Brussels.[5]

European Union[edit]

Belgium is one of the founding members of European Union, and Brussels is considered to be its de facto capital. The EU has no official capital, but Brussels hosts the official seats of the European Commission, Council of the European Union, and European Council, as well as a seat (officially the second seat but de facto the most important one) of the European Parliament.

Legal form[edit]

Like in most countries, in Belgium is is possible to register as a foundation or as an association, but there are more than one kind of both[6][7]:

  • Associations:
    • non-profit association (ASBL)
    • international non-profit association (AISBL)[8]
    • de facto association (not formally registered; not suitable for WCA)
  • Foundations:
    • private foundation
    • public utility foundation


Except for de facto associations, all types of organization require a deed of incorporation to be signed before a notary and then to be registered with a public authority; this should be short and simple. ASBL[9] and private foundations acquire the legal personality when is bylaws and acts are registered, while AISBL[10] and public utility foundations[11] requires an approval of the Ministery of Justice (via a royal decree), which can take up to six month. However, commitments can be taken also before the approval.

Accounting and reporting requirements[edit]

Accounting and reporting requirements do not seem to be unusual. There is little difference between the various type of organizations, but there are differences depending on the size of the organization (the first level is 5 employees and 312 500 € of annual budget).[12]

Documents may be required to be publicly accessible, but as usually Wikimedia organizations make accessible much more information that needed, it should not be a concern.


Non-profit organization are not subject to corporate tax but to tax on legal entities. In particular, it does not apply on the whole income but only in some cases; in particular, grants and donations are not subject to this tax (but may be subject to registration duties).[13]

There is an Annual Substitute Inheritance Tax on the value of (part of) the organisation's assets, but it is very low (0.17%).

See also[edit]