EU Australia Online - News & information from the capital of Europe direct to Australian businesses

Belgian Break-through

  • December 19th, 2007
  • Posted by EUEditor

belgian-flag.jpgSigns of a breakthrough emerged in Belgium with the formation of an interim government under the former Prime Minister, Guy Verhofstadt, who says a stable coalition can be formed before Easter.

Government processes have been paralysed in the country since elections on 10.6.07 delivered more numbers in parliament to the right-of-centre Flemish parties.

In negotiations that followed, the country’s in-built tension between French-speaking and Flemish communities intensified, with demands on the Flemish side for a constitutional deal to create more autonomy for the Flanders region.

In the initial months the comedy of the situation provoked an anonymous “vendor” to offer the country of Belgium for sale on ebay.

Serious concern developed as more time went by, bringing about the interim government, this week (18.12.07); and it is charged with handing over to a regular cabinet under Yves Leterme, leader of the Flemish Christian Democrats – main victor at the elections.

Belgium stands to have carried on for nine months without an actual government.

Belgique: un Etat sans gouvernement” (Belgium: a state without a government), Le Monde, Paris, 15.10.07

“Verhofstadt in Top Gear”, The Bulletin, Brussels, 18.12.007., (19.12.07)