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City of Brussels abolishes outdated tax on dancing

08:52 01/02/2023

A tax on dancing that dates back to the 1950s has finally been abolished in the City of Brussels.

At 40 cents per person dancing, the outdated tax has not been inconsequential for popular clubs and venues.

There was even a protest back in 2016 after Bonnefooi hung posters on its windows noting that it was "forbidden" to dance.

But the majority – including Brussels’ current mayor Philippe Close (PS) – defended the tax at the time.

Opponents argued that it was not a worthwhile source of revenue and added an administrative burden to both the city and affected clubs and venues.

The nightlife sector in Belgium is still struggling to recover from pandemic-related shutdowns and venues are eager to save money where they can, which is why the announcement of the abolishment of the tax was met with relief.

Opposition MPs Mathias Vanden Borre (N-VA) and David Weytsman (MR) said that with one old-fashioned tax struck from the books, other similar ones that do not generate substantial revenue should also be considered for abolishment.

Written by Helen Lyons