Ruling parties to meet with Wilmès in Belgian government formation puzzle

Ruling parties to meet with Wilmès in Belgian government formation puzzle
Credit: Belga

The presidents of the three parties that make up the current Belgian government are due to meet with Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès on Wednesday as the struggle to form a new Belgian government continues.

The currently governing parties consist of the country’s two liberal parties - MR and Open Vld - and the Flemish Christian-democrat party (CD&V).

Wilmès’ minority government was granted special powers to deal with the coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis, and those powers expire on 27 June.

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With that in mind, the leaders of both the francophone and Dutch-speaking socialist parties (PS and sp.a respectively) consulted with the ten parties associated with the special powers on how to form a new federal government and prepare a stimulus package.

The socialist leaders - Paul Magnette and Conner Rousseau - found no way to form a majority coalition and have instead proposed a so-called ‘classic tripartite,’ consisting of the liberal, socialist and Christian-democrat parties on both sides of the language border. The three parties in power are due to discuss this plan on Wednesday.

Such a tripartite would still not have a majority and would have to rely on other parties in Parliament, but they would prepare a plan to relaunch the economy by 17 September, at which point Wilmès would once again ask Parliament for a vote of confidence.

The presidents of CD&V and Open Vld have remained silent since Magnette and Rousseau presented their plan to the Prime Minister on Monday.

The Brussels Times

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