Flanders (Flemish Republic)

Over the course of history, the geographical territory that was called "Flanders" has varied. From around 1000 AD, Flanders historically meant to English-speaking peoples the land situated along the North Sea from the Strait of Dover to the Scheldt estuary with ill-defined southern borders. It came to refer specifically to the County of Flanders, lasting from 862 to 1795, whose territory was situated in the northwestern part of what is now Belgium (the Belgian provinces of West Flanders and East Flanders), with extensive portions in what is now northern France (French Flanders), and a small area that is now part of the Netherlands (Zeelandic Flanders). Through marriage, the County of Flanders was joined with most of the rest of the Low Countries around 1400 AD, and it lost its independence. Most of the county's territory became part of an independent Belgium in 1830, and during the 19th and 20th centuries, it became increasingly commonplace to refer to the entire Dutch-speaking and northern part of Belgium as "Flanders", including the Belgian parts of the Duchy of Brabant and Limburg. In the late 20th century, Belgium became a federal state in which the Dutch-speaking part was given autonomy as the Flemish Community (Dutch: Vlaamse Gemeenschap) and the Flemish Region (Dutch: Vlaams Gewest); these two entities were effectively merged, and Flanders now refers to the territory of the Flemish Community, which additionally has partial jurisdiction over Brussels.
Geographically, Flanders is generally flat, and has a small section of coast on the North Sea. Flanders borders France to the west, the Netherlands to the north and east, and Wallonia to the south. The Brussels Capital Region is enclaved within the Flemish Region, while Voeren is an exclave of Flanders between Wallonia and the Netherlands. Flanders is agriculturally fertile and densely populated.
Flanders has figured prominently in European history. During the late Middle Ages, Flanders' trading towns (notably Ghent, Bruges and Ypres) made it one of the richest and most urbanized parts of Europe, weaving the wool of neighbouring lands into cloth for both domestic use and export. As a consequence, a very sophisticated culture developed, with impressive achievements in the arts and architecture, rivaling those of northern Italy. As part of Belgium, Flanders was initially the poorer half of the country to industrialized Wallonia. In the second half of the twentieth century, however, there has been a gradual shift of political and economic power to Flanders, which, having modernized its economy, is now more wealthy and prosperous than its southern counterpart.
The Minister-President of Flanders (Dutch: Minister-president van Vlaanderen) is the head of the Flemish Government, which is the executive branch of the Flemish Region and Flemish Community. Usually the leader of the largest party of the Flemish Parliament becomes the minister-president. Regional elections are held every 5 years. The Flemish Parliament was elected directly for the first time in 1995. Prior to 1995, the members of the Flemish Parliament were the members of the Dutch language group of the Federal Parliament of Belgium.
  • Minister-President of Flanders
  • Gaston C. S. A. Geens.............................22 Dec 1981 - 21 Jan 1992
  • Luc Van den Brande................................21 Feb 1992 - 13 Jul 1999
  • Patrick Yvonne Hugo Dewael........................13 Jul 1999 - 05 Jun 2003
  • Renaat Julien Landuyt (acting)....................05 Jun 2003 - 11 Jun 2003
  • Bartolomeus Jozef Lodewijk Rosalia "Bart" Somers..11 Jun 2003 - 20 Jul 2004
  • Yves Camille Désiré Leterme.......................20 Jul 2004 - 28 Jun 2007
  • He also served as the Prime Minister of Belgium from 25 November 2009 to 06 December 2011.
  • Kris Peeters......................................28 Jun 2007 - date

1 Euro. Year: 2010. Weight: 7.55g. Metal: Bi-metallic; Brass in outer ring and Copper-Nickel in center. Diameter: 26 mm. Edge: Reeded and Plain; 5 patches each. Alignment: Medal. Mint: N/A. Obverse: Flanders Emblem with "13-06-2010 NIL VOLENTIBUS ARDUUM" below it. "REPUBLIEK VLAANDEREN 2010" at the bottom. 11 stars around. Reverse: "VLAAMS EURO" written above Dutch speaking north Belgium map in the center. "PEPS Intl" written below map. 11 stars around. Mintage: N/A. Minted Years: One year type.
For over a year, Belgium has not been able to create a national government because of disagreements between the French speaking portions and the Dutch speaking portions of the country. Despite the lack of a national government (or maybe because of a lack of a national government), Belgium is doing better economically than most of Europe. A number Belgians have advocated breaking the country into two separate nations. Flanders is the Dutch speaking northern part of Belgium. This 2010 1 Euro fantasy coin was created for the Flemish Republic, which does not yet exist independently. One side has a map of Flanders with the legend Vlaams €uro (Flemish Euro). The other side features a Flemish lion.
On 13 December 2006, a spoof news broadcast by the Belgian Francophone public broadcasting station RTBF declared that Flanders had decided to declare independence from Belgium.
The 2007 federal elections showed more support for Flemish autonomy. All the political parties that advocated a significant increase of Flemish autonomy gained votes as well as seats in the Belgian parliament. Several negotiators having come and gone since the federal elections of 10 June 2007 without diminishing the disagreements between Flemish and Walloon politicians regarding a further State reform, causing difficulties for the formation of the federal government and ultimately leading to the fall of the government and new elections on 13 June 2010. These were won by the pro-independence party of the N-VA in Flanders. The long-lasting government formation of 2010 broke the previous record of 2007.
Chiefa Coins