Expatica news

Belgian news in brief, 18 August 2005

14pc of Belgians living in poverty

A study has revealed 14 percent of Belgians live in poverty. In Flanders, 13 percent live in poverty, while 15 percent of people in Wallonia are poor. The latest figures were compiled by the household investigation panel ECHP, which Federal Social Integration Minister Christian Dupont set up in 2001, news service Skynet reported. Some 14 percent of women in Flanders are poor compared with 18 percent in Wallonia. In Flanders, 13 percent of men live in poverty, compared with 12 percent in Wallonia. Across the entire country, 12 percent of men and 15 percent of women live in poverty. A household is living in poverty if it earns 60 percent of the average national income.

20pc of Flemish trees damaged

One in five trees in Flemish forests is damaged, the Institute for Wildlife Conservation (IWC) said as it presented its forest inventory for 2004 on Thursday. The IWC said a tree is defined as being damaged if it has lost 25 percent of its leaves. The beech, poplar and the Corsican fir tree are in worst shape. The state of Flemish trees in 2004 was due to do with the warm and dry summer of 2003. But precipitation, condensation and collection of polluted elements also contributed to poor tree health.

Belgium gears up for World Cup qualifiers

The Belgian national soccer team has fixed its eyes its last four World Cup qualifiers in September after beating European soccer champions Greece 2-0 in a practice match. The Red Devils still hope to qualify for next year’s World Cup in Germany, but will need to win all four remaining matches. On 3 September, they will travel to Bosnia-Herzegovina before hosting modest San Marino four days later. On 8 October, Belgium host group favourites Spain and travel to Lithuania four days later, broadcaster VRT reported.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Belgian news