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Belgium’s former king struggles on $1.25 million: Report

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Albert II, the Belgian king who handed the crown to son Philippe in July, has complained that a cut in his annual allowance is "ungrateful" on the part of the Belgian government and financially "problematic" for the former monarch, according to local media reports.

Belgian newspaper Le Soir reported Thursday that the now Crown Prince Albert had complained to the Belgian government about reforms to the royal allowance which impose value-added tax and excise duties on the royal purse.

As king, Albert received 11.5 million euros ($15.5 million) annually. That was reduced to 923,000 euros ($1.25 million) following his abdication. The figure includes an annual wage of 180.000 euros and 743.000 euros in annual allowances.

Under the rules unveiled in June, only the monarch, the heir and his or her spouse and also the widow or widower of a deceased monarch will be entitled to a state allowance.

A spokesman for the Belgian Royal Palace was not immediately available to comment on the report.

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