New Flemish Alliance

The New Flemish Alliance (Dutch: Nieuw-Vlaamse Alliantie, N-VA)[17] is a Flemish nationalist[2] and conservative[18][19][20] political party in Belgium. The party was founded in 2001 by the right-leaning fraction of the centrist-nationalist People's Union (VU).[21]

New Flemish Alliance
Nieuw-Vlaamse Alliantie
LeaderBart De Wever
ChairpersonsValerie Van Peel
Lorin Parys
FounderGeert Bourgeois
Split fromPeople's Union
HeadquartersKoningsstraat 47, bus 6
BE-1000 Brussels
Youth wingJong N-VA
Membership (2018) 45,000[1]
Political positionCentre-right[12] to right-wing[13]
Big tent[14][citation needed]
European affiliationEuropean Free Alliance
European Parliament groupEuropean Conservatives and Reformists
Colours  Black
SloganDe verandering werkt.[15]
Change works.
Voor Vlaanderen. Voor Vooruitgang.[16] (2019)
For Flanders. For Progress.
Chamber of Representatives
25 / 87
(Flemish seats)
9 / 35
(Flemish seats)
Flemish Parliament
35 / 124
Brussels Parliament
3 / 17
(Flemish seats)
European Parliament
3 / 12
(Flemish seats)
Flemish Provincial Councils
46 / 175

The N-VA is a regionalist[22] and separatist[23][24][25][26] movement that self-identifies with the promotion of civic nationalism.[27] It is considered part of the Flemish Movement; the party strives for the peaceful[28] and gradual secession of Flanders from Belgium.[29] In recent years it has become the largest party of Flanders as well as of Belgium as a whole, and it participated in the 2014–18 Belgian Government until 9 December 2018.[30]

The N-VA was established as a centre-right party with the main objective of working towards furthering Flemish autonomy and redefining Belgium as a confederal country through gradually obtaining more powers for both Belgian communities separately with the belief that this will pave the way for eventual Flemish independence.[31] During its early years, the N-VA mostly followed the platform of the former People's Union by characterising itself as a big tent party combining policies from the left and right with Flemish nationalism as its central theme. Furthermore, it emphasized a pragmatic and non-revolutionary image (as opposed to the far-right character of the Vlaams Belang) in order to legitimise increased Flemish autonomy. The party also espoused non-interventionalist and pro-individual freedom messages in its original platform.[32]

In subsequent years, the N-VA moved to the right and has adopted a distinctly conservative identity under the leadership of Bart De Wever, who succeeded the founding leader Geert Bourgeois. The party is also known for its insistence on the exclusive use of Dutch, Flanders' sole official language, in dealings with government agencies, and for the promotion of the use of Dutch in Flanders.[27] The N-VA advocates free-market economics and immediate tax reductions to stimulate the economy. It also supports stricter law and order and controlled immigration policies.[33][7] The party previously advocated deepening ties with the European Union,[34] but have since shifted to a more "Eurorealist" or "Eurocritical" stance.[11]

Since the 2014 European elections, the New Flemish Alliance has sat with the European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR) parliamentary group in the European Parliament.

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