Home The Partners Province of West-Flanders

Province of West-Flanders

1 governor, 4 deputies, 36 councilors

Elected member: Jean de Bethune, Cabinet Member for the economy, housing policy, external relations, budget, community development

1 200 129 of inhabitants

250 million EUR budget


Province of West-Flanders 

The Province of West-Flanders is one of five provinces that make up the Flemish region (Flanders) in Belgium. As Belgium’s coastal region, the Province of West-Flanders is in a unique location. It is the only Flemish province to have an extensive border with France to the south, as well as a border with the Netherlands to the north and a sea border that connects Belgium with the UK, large parts of the rest of Europe and the world. It’s all just a stone’s throw away. Internationalisation is part of the DNA of our province.

Province of West-Flanders and cross-border cooperation 

Cross-border cooperation is based on the proximity of regions and the resulting natural socioeconomic coherence and opportunities. West-Flanders works with neighbouring regions Northern France, Zeeland and Kent in order to tackle border-related challenges. This cooperation is characterised by a broader thematic approach and formalised in bilateral and multilateral cooperation agreements.

West Flanders believes that setting up international partnerships, along with true knowledge exchange, creates a driving force for innovation, and enriches our educational and research institutions, businesses, municipalities, and cities.

Province of West-Flanders and the Straits Committee

The Straits Committee will allow the pursuit of lasting, good-neighbourly relations in the aftermath of the withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union. The Committee will reinforce the contacts between these territories in order to develop and implement a shared vision, identify challenges and opportunities and realise concrete projects.

The working themes of the Strait Committee are in line with the objectives of the Province of West-Flanders 

From education and economic development to environment and tourism, there are cross-border, European and international influences on our daily lives. These, however, pose an excellent opportunity to cooperate with neighbouring countries. It stimulates to find creative solutions that take projects to a higher level. 

The Province of West-Flanders supports entrepreneurs by establishing an environment that encourages innovation and growth. Therefore, the Province invests in space for companies to expand sustainably, brings cutting-edge research closer to businesses, and develops local talent. For example, it stimulates cooperation between industry, research institutions and government to strengthen sectors showing exceptional international growth opportunities such as the agri-food and the blue energy sectors. 

The Province of West-Flanders is working on a sustainable living environment within the global framework of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. It proposes thirteen concrete spearheads with a focus on natural systems, climate resilience, and making activities and sectors more sustainable. West Flanders invests for example in integrated water management trough maintenance work and the construction of controlled flooding areas and water reservoirs. 

The Province of West-Flanders wants to boost the international mobility of students, young graduates, teachers and researchers in an area of ​​work that is complementary to Erasmus+.

For example, long-term educational, internship and research experiences worldwide and short-term experiences in neighboring regions may qualify for a provincial grant.

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