"Unacceptable" says the current Belgian foreign minister and former finance minister Didier Reynders: "Women must be included in the bank's management" he says. For the time being Marcia De Wachter serves as director of Nationale Bank. The announcement of the disappearance of the sole woman in the bank's management met with strong criticism from the Flemish liberals last week. Francophone liberal Reynders concedes that all too often management only consists of women: "This was the case at Foreign affairs too, but I appointed two women!"
Other public and semi-public companies like the rail company NMBS and telecom giant Proximus too today have women CEOs. Belgian finance minister Van Overtveldt lined up Mr Vanackere for the job, but stresses it's a political appointment and Mr Vanackere was the choice of the Flemish Christian democrats. Mr Van Overtveldt concedes that the Nationale Bank management doesn't reflect society at large: "That's an understatement. During the past decade all parties appointed men at Nationale Bank!"
Mr Vanackere's appointment has not yet been finalised. Mr Van Overtveldt stresses that he's prepared to discuss the issue: "PM Michel has the final say."