French actor Gerard Depardieu has moved to Belgium in a reported bid to escape tax hikes in his homeland.
The Green Card star has bought a house in the Belgian village of Nechin, just minutes from the French border, according to local mayor Daniel Senesael.
Senesael also confirmed to the French media on Sunday (09Dec12) that Depardieu has enquired about procedures for obtaining Belgian residency.
Senesael says, "He has moved in already and he is very welcome here. He enjoys our countryside and our easygoing, rural way of life. And of course he also enjoys our lower taxes."
Frederique Espagnac, a spokesperson for France's ruling Socialist Party, says, "France without Depardieu is not the same, but Depardieu without France is not the same either. I want to say to Gerard: 'Come back soon.'"