Last year, 1381 Britons became Belgian nationals, Flemish newspapers reported on Friday, quoting data from the Belgian Statistical Office, Statbel. According to the Statbel figures, the number of Britons seeking Belgian nationality has increased tenfold since Britain’s decision to leave the European Union (EU).
Most of the applications come from Britons who have been resident in Belgium for years and want to acquire Belgian nationality because of the uncertainty about the aftermath of Brexit.
To become Belgian nationals, they have to submit an application in the municipality where they reside and pay the sum of 150 euro. They also need to prove that they have been residing legally in the country for at least five years and that they are “socially integrated”.
Applicants can prove their “social integration” mainly by showing that they are working in Belgium. They can also take an integration course, but only 30 did so in 2017.
Britons who are awarded Belgian citizenship may keep their British nationality.
The Brussels Times