Pensions in Belgium rise from 1 June

A number of new laws and measures come into effect today. The most important measures are summed up here:
  • It is mandatory to have a fluorescent vest present in your car at all times from June 1. An older law obliged drivers to wear a fluorescent vest if their car broke down on a motorway, but many did not have such a vest in their car. From now on there is no question of when a vest is needed- it must now be part of the regular kit that stays in the car. This is one of the things that will be controlled at the yearly car inspection. Obligatory are: the emergency triangle, a fire extinguisher and now a fluorescent vest.
  • Stricter norms will be used when controlling car exhaust fumes during the automobile inspections.
  • The pension of some 1.6 million pensioners in Belgium will increase. The amount depends on the category. The lowest pensions are increasing by 3%, people who have been retired for 15 years or more are getting a 2% increase, and the other categories are going up by 1.5%.
  • Private loans will be easier to get from today. The maximum interest rate is dropping by 0.05% to 1.5%.
  • As part of the fight against poverty the lowest social benefits will be increased by 2%.