Consulate General of Belgium

let them know!


Catastrophes can happen.  Nobody is immune … Unfortunately.  So please read carefully the following information [Flemish and French versions included below].

Keep the Consulate General of Atlanta informed of any changes in your addresses, emails, phones, births etcetera and spread the word to Belgians you might know and who haven’t registered yet at the Consulate General.

Belgian travelers should use the very useful Belgian Foreign Affairs’ tool Travellers Online allowing Belgians to register and give their contact information during their travels.  This would help localizing our citizens in time of difficulties.


Veillez à informer le Consulat Général d’Atlanta de tout changement d’adresse, téléphone, email, naissances etc.  Si vous connaissez des belges qui viennent d’arriver aux Etats-Unis, encouragez-les à s’inscrire auprès du Consulat.

Si vous voyagez, on vous conseille vivement de vous inscrire sur Travellers Online, outil créé par les Affaires Etrangères et qui, en cas de crise, permet de facilement localiser les belges en difficulté.


Stel het Consulaat-Generaal te Atlanta op de hoogte van alle wijzigingen in adres, e-mail, telefoon, meld evenzo geboortes en andere wijzigingenen. Informeer andere Belgen die u wellicht kent en die zich nog niet bij het Consulaat-Generaal hebben geregistreerd.

Belgische reizigers maken best gebruik van Travellers Online , opgezet door het Belgische ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken,  waarin Belgen zich kunnen registreren en hun contactgegevens opgeven voor hun reis. Het is een zeer handig hulpmiddel en aarzel dus niet om bezoekers aan te moedigen om er gebruik van te maken.

Consulate General of Belgium – Mr. William De Baets | 230 Peachtree St NW, Ste 2250, Atlanta, GA 30303  atlanta@diplobel.fed.be | Office: 404-271-9669 | Emergency : 404-659-2150

 

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Nasty Irma


Irma … a sweet name but not when it comes to a category five hurricane..  This one looks like the nastiest to hit the Atlantic Ocean ever. Even if ‘her’ path is not confirmed yet and still might change, Florida, coastal Georgia and the Carolinas might feel the impact with more or less devastating consequences.  Listen to your local authorities.  Here is a list of the few important agencies:

  • The Florida Division of Emergency Management Emergency:  Information Line 1-800-342-3557 | http://www.floridadisaster.org | Facebook: FloridaSERT | tweets @FLSERT
  • The Georgia Emergency Management & Homeland Security Agency: www.gema.ga.gov
  • The South Carolina Emergency Management Division: www.scemd.org |  Facebook: @SCEMD | National Guard on Facebook: @SCGuard | Hurricane Guide 2017
  • The North Carolina Emergency Management, part of NC Public Safety: www.ncdps.gov | Facebook: @NCEmergency
  • At the federal level, coordination is done by the Federal Emergency Management Agency: www.fema.gov | ready
  • National Hurricane Center: www.hurricanes.gov | www.nhc.noaa.gov
  • Many communities have text or email alerting systems for emergency notifications. To find out what alerts are available in your area, search the Internet with your town, city, or county name and the word “alerts.”

Both Florida and South Carolina are already in state of emergency!  Some places have also received evacuation orders.   Prepare your survival kits: purchase food and water, keep your gas tank full and phones charged at all time, have candles and/or flashlight & batteries, put your precious belongings and important documents in ziplock bags, get some cash,  secure your yard equipment, make sure you have an adequate of your medication [if needed], become familiar with local evacuation zones, locate the nearest hurricane evacuation routes, make a personal property list of valuables, electronics and furniture, …

Think about where to go in case of evacuation and agree upon a meeting point for your family in case you would be separated.  Make sure that all your kids know – by heart – your cell phone number and/or an emergency number. For the little ones, tuck in their pocket an ID card with relevant information, again, in case you would be separated. Same for the elderly and people with disabilities.

Don’t forget your pets … leave their collar day and night and make sure a pet tag is attached with his/her name and your contact information.  Remember that a scared pet might escape in panic …  Make sure that you have enough food for them as well.

And finally, if you haven’t done so yet, register your family with your Consulate General in Atlanta. For the Consulate General it is useful to know the situation and the whereabouts of the Belgians in its jurisdiction. Don’t hesitate keeping us informed via atlanta@diplobel.fed.be.

Let’s hope that José (already close to hurricane strength) is not going to follow suite!  Remain vigilant, be careful and stay safe!

Note: The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 to November 30, with the peak occurring between mid-August and late October. The Eastern Pacific hurricane season begins May 15 and ends November 30. | Interesting guide: Hurricane Guide perhaps for SC but plenty of useful information!

 

Luncheon “Belgium – EU – U.S.: Business & Politics” | 06/14/2017


As the political and economic environment in Europe shifts post-Brexit, and in light of major elections that are taking place, Belgium is seizing the moment to gain additional regional influence. Brussels houses most of the EU institutions and, despite of its size, the nation is considered an important global trader.  Join the World Affairs Council of Atlanta as it hosts the Belgian Ambassador to the U.S., Dirk Wouters, for a conversation about where Belgium stands as the European Union goes through reorganization, and what it means for U.S. businesses with presence in this country. On May 25, President Trump attended a summit of NATO nations, and Ambassador Wouters will comment on the outcome of this official meeting.

The luncheon is supported by the Consulate General of Belgium in Atlanta, The Belgian American Chamber of the South, and the Atlanta Council on International Relations.

Logistics

  • When: Wednesday, June 14th, 2017 from 11.30 am to 1.30 pm
  • Where: Commerce Club | 191 Peachtree St NE – 49th floor, Atlanta, GA 30303
  • Parking
  • Cost: BACoS and WACATL Members: $35 – Email Julie for your discount. | Non members: $50.00
  • Registration: click here.

Springboard to Europe | 6/1/2017


On June 1st, a complimentary seminar regarding doing business in Europe will be organized by Frazier & Deeter and Arnall Golden Gregory.  What are some of the key business considerations to understand before taking the leap across the pond?  This panel of experts will accelerate your learning curve.

The event starts at 8 am with Mike Whitacre, Frazier & Deeter and Tycho Stahl, Arnall Golden Gregory as moderators.

The program is as follow:

  • 8:00 – 8:05 Welcome and introduction – Mike Whitacre, Frazier & Deeter and Tycho Stahl, Arnall Golden Gregory
  • 8:05 – 8:10 Belgian Consul General Comments – William De Baets, Consulate General of Belgium
  • 8:10 – 8:15 UK Consul General Comments – Jeremy Pilmore-Bedford, British Consulate-General
  • 8:15 – 8:45 UK Discussion – Dom Fiore, PKF London
  • 8:45 – 9:15 Belgium Discussion – Kurt DeHaen, PKF Belgium
  • 9:15 – 9:45 German Discussion – Wolfgang Van Kerkom, PKF Germany
  • 9:45 – 10:15 Break and networking
  • 10:15 – 10:45 Ireland Discussion – Patt Flynn, Flynn O’Driscoll and Micheal Smith, IDA Ireland
  • 10:45 – 11:30 European Legal Discussion – Kai Westerwelle, Taylor Wessing
  • 11:30 – 1:00 Lunch and networking – Ania Lackey, Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce
  • 1:00 – 1:30 Eastern Europe Discussion – Dieter Natlacen, Taylor Wessing
  • 1:30 – 2:00 VAT Overview – Wouter Brackx, PKF Belgium

Logistics

  • When – Thursday, June 1st from 8 am – 2 pm
  • Where – Frazier & Deeter, LLC | 1230 Peachtree Street, Suite 1400, Atlanta, GA 30309
  • Registration – Space is limited!  Register by Thursday, May 25th, 2017.
    Complimentary breakfast and lunch will be provided.

 

lecture by Kurt Guldentops | 5/3/2017


The Consulate General of Belgium and the Belgian American Chamber of the South are pleased to invite to a lecture: “Belgium and the United States in an increasingly competitive world: turning points in economic history since 1945” by Kurt Guldentops.

Kurt Guldentops – originally from Antwerp (Belgium) – Ph.D. Candidate in History at the University of California – Los Angeles, will enlighten you about how Belgium and the US have fared over the last 70 years in a world economy characterized by the entry of a series of new (or renewed) centers of production.  What was the response of established producers to catch-up competitors?  Taking a long term view, you will see that catch-up is not only important to the great post war boom, but that the competition between established and emerging producers is crucial as well to understand the shape of the more turbulent decades since the 1970s.

Logistics

  • When – Wednesday, May 3, 2017 from 6 to 8 pm –  This lecture will be followed by a reception.
  • Where – Belgian Residence
  • RSVP – This event is FREE, but registration is required. Click HERE to register
    Please RSVP no later than Monday, May 1.​

news from your consulate general


Le Consulat Général à Atlanta offrira un nouveau système de prise de rendez-vous en ligne à partir du 1er mai.  Tous les rendez-vous, que ce soit pour un renouvellement de passeports, pour pré-enregistrer des données biométriques ou pour l’obtention d’un visa de tourisme pour les non ressortissants belges (si requis, en fonction de la nationalité), devront désormais être pris via le système en ligne.

Le lien vers le nouveau système de prise de rendez-vous se trouve sur les pages concernant les passeports et les visas de notre site internet ou en suivant ce lien.  N’oubliez pas de consulter le site internet afin de vérifier que vous disposez de tous les documents nécessaires avant de prendre un rendez-vous.


Het Consulaat Generaal te Atlanta neemt, vanaf 1 mei 2017, een nieuw online afsprakensysteem in gebruik.  Alle afspraken voor aanvraag of vernieuwing van uw paspoort, om uw biometrische gegevens te pre-registreren of om een toeristenvisum aan te vragen voor niet-Belgen (indien vereist – afhankelijk van nationaliteit) dienen gemaakt te worden via het online systeem.

De link naar het afsprakensysteem kan u terugvinden op de desbetreffende pagina aangaande paspoorten en visa van onze website of door hier te klikken.  Gelieve nog steeds de website te consulteren om zeker te zijn dat u beschikt over de benodigde documenten voor uw aanvraag vooraleer een afspraak te maken.


The Consulate General at Atlanta adopts an new online appointment system starting May 1st 2017.  All appointments for passport requests and renewals, to preregister your biometric data or to request a tourist visa for non-Belgians (if required – depending on nationality) will need to be made with the online system.

The link to the appointment system can be found on the related page on the topic of passports and visas of our website or by clicking here.  Please consult the website to make sure you have the required documents for your application prior to making an appointment.

F6


Flight DL 80 left gate F6, on Saturday 3/25 at 6.06 pm as scheduled. Loaded with 218 passengers and a crew of 12, the 767-400 aircraft was ready for its 4,912 nautical miles towards Brussels. Surprisingly only a handful of its occupants was aware that this was the first flight resuming the non-stop service between Atlanta and Brussels! Following the horrors of the awful attacks on Zaventem Airport and the Maelbeek metro station on Tuesday March 22nd, 2016, Delta Airlines had decided to shutter its direct flights between the cities.

Was it the real reason? Probably not … Passengers had already noticed a decrease in the flight schedules and their Atlanta destined planes filled with overbooked JFK-bound travelers. Obviously the decision to terminate this service was not well received, not only by the big companies but also by our local community.  Many stories abound of people missing their connection to Brussels in New York due to the short lay-over. Not to mention that traveling back with chocolate-loaded luggage and exhausted kids through immigration at JFK was not something anybody would relish.

So Saturday was a huge thing.  Gate F6 was heavily decorated with Belgian flags and the passengers were greeted by Papa Smurf [Grand Schtroumpf] and Hefty Smurf [Schtroumpf Costaud], dancing on the rhythm of the saxophone tunes played by Vinnie dressed in Belgian colors. A few short but convivial speeches crowned the event: Consul General Mr. William De Baets welcomed the crowd with his good sense of humor, introducing Larin Hector, General Manager Atlanta Worldport from Delta.  The mic was then handled to Mr. Pieter De Crem, Belgian Secretary of State for Foreign Trade, Former Deputy Prime Minister and Former Minister of Defence. They all made sure that everyone understood that the Smurfs, Adolph Sax and the distributed chocolate were Belgian made.
Mr. De Crem was the first on board followed by enthusiastic travelers who each received a goodie bag with a box of Neuhaus Classics and a miniature Smurf.

Delta flight schedules are updated every 3 months, based on many factors like projected bookings and types of available aircrafts. The daily non stop flight ATL-BRU takes off at 6.06 pm to reach Zaventem at 8.45 am … until further notice since Delta News indicates “the renewed Atlanta service will operate year-round with a daily service over the summer season.

And a finale note: the movie “Smurfs, The Lost Village” is now in the theaters!

Belgian honored by Pieter De Crem


Yesterday evening during the re-launch reception of Delta’s non-stop services to Brussels, our compatriot Anton Mertens, an Immigration Partner at Burr & Forman LLP and President of the Belgian American Chamber of the South, has received from the hands of Mr. Pieter De Crem, Secretary of State for Foreign Trade of Belgium, former Minister of Defense of Belgium, the prestigious Knight’s Cross of officer in the Order of Leopold signed King Philippe, King of the Belgians.  A well deserved medal for 20 years of services to our country.

The Order of Leopold (Leopoldsorde, Ordre de Léopold) is one of the three current Belgian national honorary orders of knighthood and is awarded by royal decree.

Congratulations Anton!  We are so proud of you!

 

 

WWI commemoration | 4/2/2017


Join the Consulate General of Belgium in Atlanta for a lecture by Dr. John H. Morrow, Jr. commemorating the entry of the United States in World War I. The lecture will be followed by a light European style reception.

Logistics

  • When: Sunday April 2nd, 2017, from 3 – 6pm
  • Where: Atlanta History Center | 130 West Paces Ferry Road NW, Atlanta, GA 30305
  • RSVP to Carter Jackson by March 27th.

Luncheon with Pieter De Crem | 3/23/2017


Join this luncheon, sponsored by the Consulate General of Belgium, with The Honorable Pieter De Crem, Secretary of State for Foreign Trade of Belgium, former Minister of Defense of Belgium on Thursday March 23rd at the Atlanta Metro Chamber.  Mr. De Crem is visiting our city to celebrate the resuming of the direct flight between Atlanta and Brussels [first flight on Saturday March 25th].

Mr. De Crem will discuss  ‘In the heart of Europe: Belgium, the EU and the transatlantic relationship in challenging times‘ with particular attention to:

  • Trans-Atlantic and bilateral economic relations
  • Business opportunities in Belgium
  • Current situation in Europe and future outlook

Logistics

  • When : Thursday March 23rd, 2017 from 11.45 am to 1.30 pm
  • Where: Metro Atlanta Chamber | 191 Peachtree Street NE, Suite 3400, Atlanta, GA 30303
  • Admission: free
  • RSVP: by March 21st to Sarah Saxner
  • Public Transport: 191 Peachtree Tower is located at the Peachtree Center MARTA station
  • Parking:
    • Metro Atlanta Chamber: 191 Peachtree Tower Parking Garage
    • International Garage: 192 Peachtree Center Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30303
    • Central Parking System: 218 Peachtree St NW, Atlanta, GA 30303
    • Self Park: 221 Peachtree Center Ave, Atlanta, GA 30303
    • Peachtree Center Garage: 161 Peachtree Center Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30303