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Fiona Klomp

Illus Communications

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Driving License Exchange Update

committee progress report & new town hall for Etterbeek commune

Exchanging your driving license for a Belgian version remains an administrative hurdle for expats. As soon as you are registered as a Belgian resident, this becomes compulsory. Depending on the commune in which you live, this exchange can take any number of weeks, during which time you cannot drive. Our relocation committee remains on the case and has been in contact with the authorities to gain further clarification.

Etterbeek Commune – image by Jasper Eyers

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The Conscious Consumer

COVID-19 creates deeper awareness of sustainability

Without a doubt, the biggest societal shift that took place in 2020 was due to the Coronavirus pandemic. From one day to the next, we collectively came to realise we could no longer take the world we live in for granted. Working from home, people started noticing and appreciating their surroundings more. City dwellers breathed more deeply, experiencing first-hand the impact of carbon emissions on air quality. Rural residents woke up to find sheep roaming now empty village high streets. Empty shelves in supermarkets highlighted our reliance on the global supply chain. A wakeup call that changed perspectives, including on sustainability, across the generations.

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Global Immigration Trends 2021

Fragomen uncovers the impact of COVID-19 on immigration

Earlier this year, Fragomen published its 2021 Worldwide Trends Report. It includes an immigration trends analysis broken down by region and extracts key themes and emerging trends based on Fragomen’s reference library of more than 50,000 data points, 400 global client alerts, and white papers and opinion pieces published through September 2020. We bring you an abridged version, for the full report please click the link at the end of this article.

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Corona Crisis Replacement Income

What are you entitled to?

When the corona crisis first reached Belgium, the government rushed to provide adequate support measures for all those affected. It led to a myriad of solutions, and unfortunately it wasn’t always clear who was entitled to what and under which conditions. With the crisis lasting longer than anticipated, the existing support measures were scrutinised, simplified and extended into 2021.

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Brexit Update: your rights as a UK citizen in Belgium

what changes on 1 January 2021

On 31st January 2020, the United Kingdom left the European Union. A transition period followed, lasting until 31st December 2020 during which time, freedom of movement continued to apply. This transition period ends on 1st January 2021, which means you will have to apply for a new status as a beneficiary of the Withdrawal Agreement.

Brexit your rights as an EU citizen

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Expat Partner

find your flow as a trailing spouse

“So, what do you do?” is perhaps the most often asked question in any given social situation. It’s not surprising then that we often believe our identity to be wrapped up with our careers. But what happens when you move abroad? Can you continue to further your career as a trailing partner, or will you feel left behind during your partner’s foreign assignment? Finding the answer might not be as difficult as you expect…

 

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Fortify Your Mental Resilience

practical advice in stressful times

With Belgium in the European top 3 for COVID-19 related deaths per 100,000 inhabitants and with a second lockdown freshly instated, it’s safe to say that, as a nation, we’re on high alert. It’s also safe to say that these last eight months have had their impact on our mental wellbeing. We caught up with past ABRA keynote speaker Willemijn van Dommelen of PRR Consultancy to find out how we can fortify our mental resilience in times of COVID. 

 

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Accommodation Industry

Will COVID-19 have a lasting impact?

The scale and impact of the novel coronavirus and subsequent quarantine measures have led us all into uncharted territory. As the pandemic continues to evolve, our serviced apartment providers have been working hard to ensure they are able to provide tenants and staff with a safe and hygienic environment. We wanted to find out how our accommodation providers have experienced the past eight months and how they are coping now that we are back in lockdown. Our thanks go out to everyone who responded to our informal callout for feedback.

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Are Home Viewings Allowed?

IPI/BIV contests government guidelines

UPDATE NOVEMBER 17th: It appears private individuals may now view properties, providing no one else is on site at the time.

The lockdown instated on Monday November 2nd has called for all non-essential businesses to close. The list of allowed commercial activities is more extensive than during the first lockdown, but under the current governmental guidelines property viewings, and entry and exit surveys are forbidden.

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