The National Crisis Center (NCCN) is at the service of various government authorities and emergency services 24/7.
The NCCN wants to be a reliable and neutral partner for governments, security services, disciplines and administrations with a view to strengthening the safety and resilience of our country. This translates into the following missions:
- To increase the resilience of our society: The NCCN is developing a global strategy to increase the resilience of our society. Components of this strategy are the development of a methodology for national and operational risk analyses, the launch of preventive information campaigns on risks in Belgium, the coordination of the security and protection of critical infrastructures, contributing to maritime safety, cybersecurity, etc.
- To organise emergency planning and crisis management at the national level: The NCCN is responsible for organising and coordinating emergency planning and crisis management at the national level. The NCCN has efficient, appropriate and adequate infrastructure, personnel and procedures at its disposal to do so. To this end, the NCCN also cooperates with international partners and partner organisations (EU, NATO, UN, etc.).
- To ensure active vigilance: as a national and international contact point for alerts, the NCCN collects and analyses all notifications that may have an impact on the security of our country 24/7 and disseminates this information to the competent authorities. The NCCN also coordinates the safety of large events and the protection of persons and institutions in Belgium.
- To process passenger data (BelPIU): the Belgian Passenger Unit within the NCCN collects, processes and stores data of passengers travelling by international transport in the fight against terrorism and serious and organised crime.
Vision and organisation
The NCCN is a multidisciplinary, interdepartmental, inter-federal and internationally oriented organisation which, from a central key position, responds to societal challenges, offers strategic support to all its partners in synergy with all security actors, and has efficient, appropriate infrastructure at its disposal to deal with crises of all kinds, regardless of their nature and dimensions.
The NCCN and its staff are committed to the following 6 principles:
- Being a flexible, proactive and reliable organisation
- Striving for and guaranteeing a high level of expertise
- Reflecting our society by maximising equal opportunities, diversity and well-being within the 'NCCN way of working'
- A continuous multidisciplinary and transversal orientation of all tasks
- Fulfilling a support role for partner services and governments
- Pursuing maximum deployment of new technologies
A look back in time
The National Crisis Center was created on 18 April 1988 and has already gone through quite an evolution. Some important dates
- 1984-1987: The CCC commit several attacks, 39 people die and more than 300 are injured in the Heysel stadium disaster, the nuclear power plant in Chernobyl explodes and the Herald of Free Enterprise sinks. Several emergencies in the 1980s made us realise that our country had neither an on-call service for the government, nor infrastructure for crisis management.
- 1986: Establishment of the Coordination and Crisis Centre of the Government (CGCCR)
- 18 April 1988: The Royal Decree of 18 April 1988 legally establishes the CGCCR.
- January 2003: The General Directorate Crisis Centre (ADCC) becomes one of the five General Directorates of the Federal Public Service Home Affairs. The on-call service and the Public Order department are merged under the heading 'integrated crisis and events management'. Support is provided to the Emergency Planning department, including the Higher Institute for Emergency Planning.
- August 2003: Project office Regetel is integrated into the ADCC.
- 2009: The Alerting Service joins the ADCC. This service manages the siren network and works on modernising the warning channels for the population in the event of an emergency. The department in charge of Critical Infrastructure also joins.
- 2016: BELPIU is established within the ADCC.
- 2018: The ADCC changes its name to become the National Crisis Center (NCCN). Based on the recommendations of the Parliamentary Committee of Enquiry on the attacks and the policy lines of the Belgian government, the rollout of the new vision and orientation of the National Crisis Center is started. As a result, the organisation is thoroughly reorganised, capacities are gradually built up and external expertise is gradually embedded. New structures to meet new risks are also added: the NCCN is expanded with two new services, the CBRNe Expertise Centre and the International Crisis Management Cell (ICC).