For centuries, Flanders has been a hub for international politics, trade and culture. It remains so today. We host both the European Union and NATO. We are the 15th-largest exporter worldwide. We are home to people of 188 different nationalities. And our cultural cities are a magnet for world-class arts events.
Retaining our central place throughout the centuries is thanks in no small part to our native entrepreneurship, adaptability and ambition - tempered by our objectivity and realism. We recognise that we are dependent on the world around us for our prosperity and development. Then as now, Flanders must be international, or it is not Flanders.
International solidarity is the foundation for our active foreign policy. We represent our interests in various ways across multiple domains, always with a keen sense of the global interests at play. Because ultimately, what is good for the world, is also good for Flanders. Flanders agrees fully-fledged international treaties, organises diplomatic and economic services abroad, and manages its own foreign policy budget. Flanders’ foreign policy takes shape through the Department of Foreign Affairs and is implemented in cooperation with the other departments and agencies.
In this brochure you can read more about our goals and our approach to realising them: pdf fileFlanders is international.pdf (10.31 MB)