The president of the Socialist Party (PS), Elio Di Rupo, on Tuesday proposed the establishment in 2019 of a “new social pact” to replace the “destructive” programme of Belgium’s Reformist Movement/New Flemish Alliance (MR/N-VA) government, which, he said, has pursued a “hard neoliberal policy”. “This will be an implacable combat,” Di Rupo predicted, ahead of two important polls – the municipal elections in October 2018 and the legislative polls in May 2019. There is a clear choice, he said, between the Socialist “Camp of Progress” and the MR’s “World of the Rich”, which engenders “Misery and Regression”.
Gearing for “reconquest” after the “difficulties” that undermined it, the PS intends to convince citizens of the need to “impose our presence at the table of the different governments”. To do this, Elio Di Rupo promises “a social pact that will repair all that has been destroyed by the MR and N-VA.”
Draft laws presented in parliament reflect thus far 60% of the commitments made at the party’s brainstorming sessions. They include a bill that reflects a demand of the General Federation of Belgian Labour, FGTB, present, alongside the Solidaris – The Socialist Mutuality Insurance, at the Parc Communal de Baudour, the municipal park where Di Rupo traditionally speaks.
That bill aims to set the hourly minimum wage at 14 euros, up from the present 9.5 euros.