Belgium saw a 1.7% increase in marriages in 2018, when 45,059 couples tied the knot, the Belgian statistical office, Statbel, disclosed on Monday.
Most of the couples were in their thirties, while the age difference between partners remained stable at an average of 2.4 years.
Flanders registered the highest increase, according to Statbel. Marriages there went up by 2.1% between 2017 and 2018. The number went up slightly in Wallonia (+0.4%) and decreased in Brussels by 0.6%.
There was also a slight increase in divorces – 23,135 (+0.3%) in 2018 – while the number of common-law relationships was stable, with 38,921 new ones declared in 2018.
While there was a 4.4% increase in the number of cessations of legally recognised common-law relationships, this was due primarily to the fact that the partners had decided to get married, Statbel explained.
Finally, the average duration of marriages that ended in divorce remained unchanged, at 15 years.