At the Nice Council of November 2000, the Member States of the EU adopted a set of common objectives in the framework of an open co-ordination strategy to combat social exclusion. Every two years, each Member State draws up a National Action Plan for Social Inclusion (NAP) which is jointly evaluated.
The European Commission has appointed non-governmental experts to follow up and assess the whole process at the national level. The present report thus reviews the first Belgian NAP, which focused mainly on the ‘active welfare state’ policy. The report is rather positive about the successes of this policy, despite the adverse economic circumstances. As regards education, and particularly housing, the report is more critical. Special attention has also been devoted to the involvement of associations representing socially excluded groups in the process – and to new developments on the national, European and global scale which need to be taken on board in the future plans.