"It is in Belgium."
Translation:Het ligt in België.
My girlfriend, a native Dutch speaker, tells me the distinction between ligt vs. is would be that "Het ligt in België" refers mostly to places/cities ("Antwerp ligt in België"), while "Het is in België" refers to everything else ("Mijn moeder is in België.", "My mother is in Belgium").
You are right, except that you can also use "is" for places/cities. "Antwerpen is in België" is a correct sentence.
I believe you use 'ligt' when referring to the location of inanimate objects/places. For example, 'Ik ben in Gent en Gent ligt in België' (I am in Ghent, and Ghent is in Belgium).
So for this instance of "is" we use "lies in." In a previous lesson, "is" got turned into "stands." How do we know when to say something lies or something stands? Or is it interchangeable?
It is situational. We do this in english to an extent but its not very commen. For example "a statue stands in the courtyard." or "a book lies on the table, unread." Those of us who indulge in the ocasional "historical" romance might see it more then most. °///°