Three new freelancers in four happy to have taken the plunge

Three new freelancers in four happy to have taken the plunge

Three freelancers in four are happy to have taken the plunge into the world of freelancing and would do it again, according to a poll completed by 1,000 new freelancers in 2018. The poll was done by the human resources service Acerta and the results were published on Sunday. The Acerta study shows that 75% of freelancers who were asked about their early experiences are happy with their choice. 75% would do it again without hesitation, while 53% thought they were sufficiently prepared beforehand. On the contrary, one in four…

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The UK can decide on its own to revoke Brexit

The UK can decide on its own to revoke Brexit

The United Kingdom can decide on its own to reverse its withdrawal from the European Union, without needing the approval of the other member States, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) said in a ruling handed down on Monday. The United Kingdom is free to revoke unilaterally the notification of its intention to withdraw from the European Union, the CJEU stated. However, it said any decision by the U.K. to revoke Brexit must taken “in accordance with its constitutional requirements”. It would mean that the UK would…

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Gymnast Nina Derwael awarded 2018 Flemish Sport Jewel

Gymnast Nina Derwael awarded 2018 Flemish Sport Jewel

Nina Derwael has been awarded this year’s Flemish Sport Jewel prize. It has been a very successful year indeed for the 18-year-old gymnast from Sint-Truiden in Limburg Province. She became both European and World Champion on the uneven parallel bar in Glasgow and Qatar respectively. The decision to award her the Flemish Sport Jewel was taken unanimously by the jury. Previously Nina Derwael won the Trophy for Sporting Achievement. The Flemish Sport Jewel is awarded annually to a sportsman or sportswoman that has made an exceptional achievement over the past…

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EU ministers approve clean-energy package despite Belgian reservations

EU ministers approve clean-energy package despite Belgian reservations

European Union member States have approved three clean-energy dossiers despite reservations expressed by Belgium on behalf of its regions. The EU ministers approved a revised Efficient Energy Directive, a revised Renewable Energy Directive and a new Governance Regulation, negotiated in recent months with the European Parliament based on proposals presented by the Commission in late 2016. The two directives require the EU to obtain 32% of its energy from renewable sources by 2030 and to improve its energy efficiency by 32.5% by the same target date. The regulation on governance…

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Alibaba to invest in logistical hub in Liège

Alibaba to invest in logistical hub in Liège

The Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba is to invest 75 million euro in a logistic hub at Liège Airport in Wallonia. It will be the company’s first such hub in the EU. The company made the announcement at the signing of a statement of intent in Liège on Wednesday morning. The signing ceremony was attended by representatives of the company and of the Walloon and federal governments, including the Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel (Francophone liberal). Last week the Board of Liège Airport unanimously voted to approve Alibaba’s plans to set…

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Belgian and British electricity grids get connected

Belgian and British electricity grids get connected

From now on the Belgian and the UK electricity grids are connected thanks to an undersea cable. The Nemo Link was inaugurated on Wednesday. Belgium’s electricity distribution network was already connected to that of our neighbours The Netherlands, France and Luxembourg and work is currently underway on an electricity interconnector that will link up our country’s electricity grid to that of Germany. The company responsible for Belgium’s high tension electricity distribution network Elia and the British National Grid have been working on the cable for the past 10 years. The…

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Kazakhstan celebrates the Day of the First President

Kazakhstan celebrates the Day of the First President

On 1 December, Kazakhstan marked the Day of the First President. The holiday was established as recognition for the work by the country’s first President Nursultan Nazarbayev. The date was chosen for a reason. It was on this day when in 1991 Kazakhstan held the first national presidential elections. In many countries of the world, the first leaders and founding fathers play a crucial role in the development of a country, in uniting a nation and positioning it on the international arena as a responsible member of the global community….

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3,000 post boxes to be scrapped

3,000 post boxes to be scrapped

Almost one in four post boxes in Belgium are to be removed. The Belgian Post Office Bpost is to reduce the number of post boxes in Belgium from 13,000 to 10,000. Bpost’s spokeswoman Barbara Van Speybroeck told journalists that “The network of red post boxes has not been adapted to changing customer behavior since 2004”. Fewer letters are being posted. Since 2004 the number of letters being posted in Bpost’s network of red post boxes has fallen by 60%. According to figures from Bpost, fewer than 6 letters a day…

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65,000 people take part in Brussels’ Climate March

65,000 people take part in Brussels’ Climate March

Brussels Capitale-Ixelles police say around 65,000 people took part in the Climate March on Sunday. The Brussels march was organised by Climate Express and the Climate Coalition. The march happened at the same time as the 24th UN Climate Change Conference (COP24) in Katowice, Poland. Negotiations that aim to breathe new life into the Paris agreement will take place in two weeks. National Environment Day started at 1pm on Sunday, in Brussels’ Gare du Nord. It will end at 5pm, with a climate-based event in Parc Cinquantenaire. There will be…

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BNP Paribas Fortis to transfer 1.9-billion-euro dividend to its French mother company

BNP Paribas Fortis to transfer 1.9-billion-euro dividend to its French mother company

BNP Paribas Fortis will transfer an interim dividend of 1.9 billion euros to its French mother company BNP Paribas, on Tuesday, the Belgian bank announced on Monday. The amount represents BNP Paribas Fortis’ net profit for 2017. In December 2015, BNP Paribas Fortis had remitted two billion euros to Paris and the BNP Paribas Group, which owns over 99.9% of the Belgian bank. The new “exceptional” dividend had been strongly contested at the time by unions because the firm had adopted a strategic plan that included cutting 1,050 posts in…

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