On 19 July 2021, another update was published concerning the countries for which Belgium has instituted a travel ban.  In our last report,  we noted that the Belgian government had introduced additional travel restrictions, resulting in a travel ban for individuals travelling from 27 countries (including Brazil, India, and South Africa) into Belgium.  (For prior coverage, see GMS Flash Alert 2021-192, 1 July 2021.)  This latest update brings down the number of countries on which the ban applies to 20.

This GMS Flash Alert highlights the update of the list of countries from which entry into Belgium is, in principle, denied.


The various COVID-19 containment measures have had a profound impact on both professional and personal travel.  Companies worldwide have had to cancel or postpone business trips and assignments.  However, many companies are slowly starting to resume their international travel plans and prepare for upcoming business travel and assignments.  Notwithstanding, the increased travel restrictions triggered by the rise of new COVID-19 variants could again impact travel and relocations to Belgium.  

Employers and their mobile employees may need to – at least for the time being – reconsider their plans.  To the extent possible, it may be prudent for some individuals to delay any plans to depart Belgium (if their plan is to return to the country) to prevent complications and the possibility of being refused re-entry at the border, as the situation is fluid.


Belgium decided to identify a list of 27 ”high-risk countries” and introduce measures intended to contain the further spread of the new variants in Belgium.  On 19 July 2021, an update to the list of countries was published on the website of the federal government.1  


The institution of this travel ban means that in many cases third-country nationals originating from one of the now 20 countries on the list will not be able to travel to Belgium until further notice (even if they received their work permit/single permit approval before 26 June 2021).  The only exceptions to this travel ban concern:

  • diplomatic missions;
  • Belgian residents/nationals (travelling back from one of those 20 countries);
  • professional travel undertaken by transport personnel and seafarers.


Employers will need to stay abreast of the changes to the list of high-risk countries since their plans for economic migration or business travel arrangements to/from Belgium could be impacted.   

Which Countries?

The following countries are considered as high-risk countries and individuals originating from those countries are not allowed to enter Belgium respectively as from 26 June 2021 or 3 July 2021, until further notice:

  • Argentina
  • Lesotho
  • South Africa (already denied entry since 28 April 2021)
  • Bolivia
  • Malawi (as from 17 July 2021)
  • Suriname
  • Botswana
  • Mexico 
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Brazil (already denied entry since 28 April 2021)
  • Mozambique
  • Uruguay
  • Chile
  • Namibia
  • Zambia (as from 10 July 2021)
  • Colombia
  • Paraguay
  • Zimbabwe
  • eSwatini (Swaziland)
  • Peru


This list will be reviewed regularly and for a real-time update the following link may be visited: “Measures for territories of countries classified as very high risk” at: https://www.info-coronavirus.be/en/countries-with-high-risk/.


Any questions or concerns regarding any third-country nationals wanting to work or currently working in Belgium should be directed to your qualified professional services contact or a member of the team (see “Contact Us” section) with the KPMG International member firm in Belgium.  


1  For the updated list of high-risk countries (in English), go to: https://www.info-coronavirus.be/en/countries-with-high-risk/.

*  Please note that KPMG LLP (U.S.) does not offer immigration services or labour law services. However, KPMG Law LLP in Canada can assist clients with U.S. immigration matters.


The information contained in this newsletter was submitted by the KPMG International member firm in Belgium.


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