The latest pair of royal informants to take on the role of forming a federal government is looking to make a coalition proposal which could consist of the Francophone socialists and the Flemish nationalists.
The dragged-out process of forming a new government has been marred by tensions between the leaders of both parties, whose opposing political agendas have seen the parties consistently at loggerheads.
Informants Joachim Coens and Georges-Louis Bouchez are meant to hold separate meetings with the Parti Socialiste (PS) and with the Nieuw-Vlaamse Alliantie (N-VA), the biggest winners of the election in their respective regions.
Despite prickly talks and negative public statements about each other having been repeatedly issued by both parties, Bouchez and Coens are expected to give the potential coalition another try, Le Soir reports.
The fraught negotiation process, ongoing for more than 7 months since the elections took place, has seen a total of five informants walk away from their mission as informants, following repeated failures to get parties to find common ground during a series of negotiation rounds.
PS leader Paul Magnette said that ruling with the N-VA was “impossible” for the French socialists, in a statement issued in July, before being appointed a royal informant himself, a mission he requested to be discharged from in December.
News that the current informants were planning to make a coalition proposal during a Monday meeting with King Philippe comes after a draft note on the negotiations was leaked to the press on Wednesday.
The leak, which Bouchez called “irresponsible,” sparked speculation about where the informants were seeking to steer the negotiations.
In opposing reactions to the note, the leader of the N-VA group in the Chamber said the informant’s note was “more realistic” than previous ones by Magnette, while the PS said the contents of the note were “inadmissible.”
“This is going in the right direction,” N-VA group leader Peter De Roover told De Morgen. “What’s important now is which direction we are going — to what extent does the PS want to [take into acccount] the lives of people in the north of the country?”