More than 48,000 people gained Belgian nationality last year

A total of 48,482 people acquired Belgian nationality in 2022, 24 per cent more than the year before, the federal migration centre Myria announced on Thursday. On average, 2.6 out of every 100 foreigners in the country acquired Belgian citizenship last year. Iraqis and Syrians were the most likely to become Belgian citizens in 2022.

With 4,842 Moroccans becoming Belgian, Morocco represents 10 per cent of this group, followed by Syrians (3,615) and Romanians (2,791). A quarter of the new Belgians come from the EU. The number of Turks who became Belgians (1,797) has almost doubled compared to 2021.

Two issues

Myria also denounces two problems with the current procedure. Firstly, people who cannot read or write are unable to obtain Belgian citizenship because they have to be able to speak and write in one of the national languages.

"This legal requirement excludes people who are perfectly integrated and express themselves correctly orally, but who are unable to master the written language," Myria says. The Constitutional Court also ruled in March 2023 that the exclusion from Belgian citizenship of certain groups of people who cannot read or write was discriminatory.

Parents on parental leave are also at risk of being discriminated against, says Myria, as proof of "continuous employment" is a key point for acquiring nationality by declaration. The Constitutional Court has already stated that parents on parental leave should not be disadvantaged in their access to Belgian nationality in order to guarantee their right to family life.



Get updates in your mailbox

By clicking "Subscribe" I confirm I have read and agree to the Privacy Policy.


Belga News Agency delivers dependable, rapid and high-quality information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, from Belgium and abroad to all Belgian media. The information covers all sectors, from politics, economics and finance to social affairs, sports and culture, not to mention entertainment and lifestyle.

Every day, our journalists and press photographers produce hundreds of photos and news stories, dozens of online information items, plus audio and video bulletins, all in both national languages. Since the end of March 2022 English has been added as a language.

For public institutions, businesses and various organisations that need reliable information, Belga News Agency also offers a comprehensive range of corporate services to meet all their communication needs.


Arduinkaai 29 1000 Brussels