Belgium's new federal administration was sworn in on Thursday morning before King Philippe, giving the country its first fully-fledged federal government in nearly two years.
King Philippe swore in a 20-member gender-equal federal cabinet made up of 14 ministers and five secretaries of state (10 Francophone, 9 Dutch-speaking), plus new premier Alexander De Croo, a native Dutch speaker.
The portfolios have been split up between the 7 parties in the so-called Vivaldi coalition: the Flemish and Francophone liberals, socialists and greens and the Flemish centrist and socially conservative CD&V.
The new cabinet features the first-ever female defence minister, the brother of the former premier Charles Michel and a striking comeback by Frank Vandenbroucke, who left politics to pursue a career and academia and is the oldest member of the mostly 40-somethings making up the cabinet.
[caption id="attachment_114756" align="alignnone" width="1020"] After leading the country during the height of the Covid-19 crisis, Sophie Wilmès will take on the Foreign Affairs portfolio and has clinched a Deputy PM position. © Belga/Olivier Hoslet[/caption]
Deputy Prime Ministers
Minister of Health and Deputy Prime Minister: Frank Vandenbroucke, 64 (Flemish socialists sp.a)
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Deputy PM: Sophie Wilmès, 45(Francophone liberals MR)
Minister of Finance and Deputy PM: Vincent Van Peteghem, 39 (Flemish centrists CD&V)
Minister of Justice and Deputy PM: Vincent Van Quickenborne, 47 (Flemish liberals Open Vld)
Minister of Economy and Work and Deputy PM: Pierre-Yves Dermagne, 39 (Francophone socialists PS)
Minister of Public Enterprises and Public Administration and Deputy PM: Petra De Sutter, 57 (Flemish greens Groen)
Minister for Mobility and Deputy PM: Georges Gilkinet, 49 (Francophone greens Ecolo)
[caption id="attachment_133721" align="alignnone" width="800"] Key environmental portfolios went to the green parties, with Groen's Dutch-speaking Tinne Van der Straeten at the head of the Energy Ministry. Credit: Albert Vicaire/Wikimedia Commons (CC-BY-SA 4.0)[/caption]
Minister of Environment, Climate and Sustainable Development: Zakia Khattabi, 44 (Francophone greens Ecolo)
Minister of Energy: Tinne Van der Straeten, 42 (Flemish greens Groen)
Minister of Defense: Ludivine Dedonder, 43 (Francophone socialists PS)
Minister of the Interior: Annelies Verlinden, 42 (Flemish centrist CD&V)
Minister of Agriculture and the Self-Employed: David Clarinval, 44 (Francophone liberals MR)
Minister of Pensions: Karine Lalieux, 56 (Francophone socialists PS)
Minister for Development and Cooperation: Meryame Kitir, 40 (Flemish socialists sp.a)
[caption id="attachment_133724" align="alignnone" width="659"] The Michel family lingers on with Mathieu Michel, the younger brother of former PM and current EU Council President Charles Michel, appointed secretary of state. © Belga[/caption]
Secretaries of State
State Secretary for Asylum and Migration: Sammy Mahdi, 32 (Flemish centrists CD&V)
State Secretary for Budget: Eva De Bleeker, 46 (Flemish liberals Open Vld)
State Secretary for Economic Recovery and National Strategic Investment Plan: Thomas Dermine, 34 (Francophone socialists PS)
State Secretary for Equal Opportunities: Sarah Schlitz, 33 (Francophone greens Ecolo)
State Secretary for the Digital Agenda: Mathieu Michel, (Francophone liberals MR)
The Brussels Times