Antwerp reaches the demographic tipping point
Belgium’s most populous city Antwerp now has more immigrants living there than native inhabitants.
Published: February 28, 2019, 8:10 am
“That’s it — Antwerp now has more non-natives than natives,” a headline of French-language news weekly, L’Express announced. New figures show that 53,2 percent of residents in the city were not born in the country.
The latest demographic report from City Monitor, as well as to data compiled by sociologist Jan Hertogen earlier this month, revealed that North African immigrants — who in Belgium hail mostly from Morocco — and migrants from West Asia, who are mostly Turkish, have surpassed local Antwerp residents in numbers. Hertogen welcomed the shift.
Immigrants in the city have increased from 46 percent in 2014, L’Express reported, highlighting that the major demographic shift “obviously has consequences” for politics in Antwerp.
The former Flemish city has been led since 2013 by Mayor Bart De Wever, who heads the centre-right New Flemish Alliance (N-VA) party, but his chances of being re-elected have become slim.
Local media published data compiled by the University of Antwerp showing that voters with a migrant background overwhelmingly supporting left-wing parties. Only a quarter of the city’s young children today are Belgian natives,.
According to the study, almost 90 percent of the city’s voters with Moroccan or Turkish origins voted at last October’s elections for left-wing parties, with 31 percent opting for the extreme left Workers’ Party of Belgium (PVDA).
“The N-VA attracted only a remarkably low proportion of votes” from people in this demographic, said L’Express, adding that the changing electoral landscape “should not really surprise” anyone, because 10 percent of “old Belgians” who voted in 2012 have now been replaced by voters “of immigrant origin”.
Hertogen pointed out that it was “only voters aged 40 to 50 and above who are voting for the right [N-VA] and far-right [populist Flemish Interest (VB)] in Antwerp,” claiming that this “illustrates painfully how De Wever appeals explicitly to remnants of the far-right, and the historic frustration of old Belgians”.
He said: “De Wever is mayor of a city now already lost” because demographic change is making a future N-VA victory almost unthinkable. Already in 2015 — 72 percent of the city’s children aged six and younger were from a migrant background.
“The future of a place in the decades to come can be read from the composition of children from 0 to 6 years and the evolution of this demographic in recent years,” Hertogen explained, adding that “Berber as a language [will be spoken] alongside Dutch Arabic, Moroccan Arabic and for some children ‘standard’ Arabic, alongside French, English, German, etc”.
But even though Antwerp’s conservatives are facing huge problems due to the changing demographic, support for Belgium’s two largest Flemish anti-immigration parties exploded after the collapse of the Belgian government due to disagreements over the UN Migrantion Compact.
When combined, the New Flemish Alliance (N-VA) and Vlaams Belang now account for a massive 42 percent of the vote in Flanders according to a poll released by Belgian newspaper Het Nieuwsblad.
Last year, Hertogen complained about “actual apartheid” in Belgium because non-EU nationals who had lived in the country for less than five years, were not allowed to vote in the elections. He told Flemish news magazine Knack that all foreigners living in Belgium should be automatically registered and required by law to vote, in order “to ensure democracy”.
To get rid of conservatives, “the solution is obvious,” he said, as “the phantom of mass immigration is frequently raised in populists’ discourse”. Hertogen welcomed Islamic “diversity”.
The huge increase in the Muslim population has resulted two thirds of Belgians sensing that their country was being “increasingly invaded”, according to a poll.
Antwerp has now joined several other cities and communes in Europe where Muslims outnumber the local inhabitants. British capital London has been minority majority since the 2011 census, while Britain’s second city, Birmingham, is expected to be majority minority in 2021.
In London, both mass migration and white flight resulted in the city hitting the demographic tipping-point faster than expected.
All rights reserved. You have permission to quote freely from the articles provided that the source (www.freewestmedia.com) is given. Photos may not be used without our consent.
Consider donating to support our work
Help us to produce more articles like this. FreeWestMedia is depending on donations from our readers to keep going. With your help, we expose the mainstream fake news agenda.
Keep your language polite. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in, for example, Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.
If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violations of any law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.
If your comments are subject to preview by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.
We reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.
RomeThe leader of the League held a press conference to take stock of the Coronavirus crisis: "The problem is not with the red zones but with the whole territory." Italy now has three times the number of infected cases compared to Hong Kong.
The focal point on which Italian citizens should focus does not concern so much the danger of the Coronavirus which, as ascertained, causes death only in rare cases, but its management. The special measures taken in Lombardy were adopted not so much because Covid-19 represents the plague of the 21st century, but rather to limit its spread.
Austria has stopped a Venice-Monaco Eurocity train with 300 passengers on board, after the explosion of the number of Coronavirus infections in Italy.
SeoulThe economic damage that the Coronavirus epidemic could wreak globally, was confirmed when the United States raised its travel advisory for industrial giant South Korea.
ParisThe president of the National Rally, Marine Le Pen, responded after the shocking revelations by a French weekly magazine on how the European Court of Human Rights has been infiltrated by organisations answering to the American "philanthropist" George Soros.
It appears that the Italian judiciary is in a hurry to move against former Interior Minister Matteo Salvini. The offices of the investigating magistrate of Catania have already received the official request of the prosecutor to set a preliminary hearing in the context of the proceeding against the Salvini "kidnapping" case.
ParisIn its latest issue, a French weekly revealed the extent of the influence of Georges Soros, the Hungarian billionaire at the head of the NGO network Open Society Foundations, on the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).
BrusselsThe European Commissioner of the Interior defended the right of migrants to ask for asylum, and even though this right “cannot be offered at each meter of the border” it should be, she argued.
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban on Thursday warned of a rise in the number of organised groups of migrants attempting to enter the country as summer approaches as migration pressure increases on the country's southern border.
ParisIn total, between 2015 and 2017, some 44 000 people were victims of a stabbing attack in France.