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Power-Sharing in Belgium

Belgium is a small country in Europe. It has borders with France, the Netherlands, Germany and Luxembourg. In Belgium, 59 per cent of the population speak Dutch, 40 per cent people speak French, and the remaining speak German. In the capital city Brussels, 80 per cent of the population speak French and 20 per cent Dutch.


The minority French-speaking community was relatively rich and powerful. This was resented by the Dutch-speaking community who got the benefit of economic development and education. This led to tensions between the Dutch-speaking and French-speaking communities during the 1950s and 1960s.


Belgian leaders recognised the differences. They amended their constitution so as to work out a solution so that these diverse groups could live together within the same country. Though these arrangements look complicated, they have worked well.


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