Land-use Planning Systems in the OECD

Country Fact Sheets

image of Land-use Planning Systems in the OECD

This report provides an overview of spatial and land-use planning systems across the OECD. It contains country fact sheets that focus on formal aspects of planning systems, as they are defined by laws and regulations. The country fact sheets describe the responsibilities of each level of government with respect to spatial and land-use planning. They include a description of all spatial and land-use plans of a country and show their hierarchical relations in a diagram. For most countries, the fact sheets also contain key statistics on land use. A summary chapter provides an overview of the information in the country fact sheets and discusses land value capture tools, land expropriation procedures, reforms of the planning system, and other issues. The information provided in this report was collected through a survey that involved academic experts on planning from all 32 countries covered.




Belgium is a federal country with 4 levels of government; the national level, 3 regions (Flanders, Brussels and Wallonia), 10 provinces and 589 municipalities. The division of tasks with respect to land-use policies is determined by the constitution and regions have almost complete autonomy in land-use decisions. The federal government affects land use only through national legislation, such as the Civil Code, which contains elements related to building activities. However, the strict decentralisation of land-use planning to the regions occurred only in the last two decades of the 20th century. The regional land-use plans that were prepared based on national legislation of the 1962 Act have been incorporated into current regional law in all three regions and continue to regulate land use in large parts of the country.


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