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    Belgium switches to summertime this weekend

    © Belga

    Belgium switches to summertime on Sunday morning, so at 2.00 a.m. the clock will move forward by one hour and it will be 3.00 a.m.

    The switch between wintertime and summertime is regulated by a 2001 directive. All EU States make the change to summertime in the last weekend of March of each year and switch to wintertime in the last week of October. However, summertime had actually been (re)introduced earlier, in the 1970s, as a means of saving on energy, although the effectiveness of the measure is contested.

    After carrying out a public consultation, the European Commission had recommended, in September 2018, the abolition of the seasonal time change from 2019. However, member States found the timeline too short and the change was postponed to 2021. The new measure leaves it up to each country to decide whether to remain on summertime or wintertime.

    An opinion poll commissioned by the Office of the Prime Minister found that the majority (83%) of Belgians were in favour of scrapping the seasonal time change. Half of the respondents felt the country should permanently adopt wintertime, while 45% found that it should stay on summertime.

    Oscar Schneider
    The Brussels Times