Nicolas Maeterlinck

Kris Peeters resigns from caretaker Federal Government

The Flemish Christian democrat Deputy Prime Minister in Belgium’s caretaker Federal Government Kris Peeters has tendered his resignation. Mr Peeters intends to take his seat in the European Parliament. The man once dubbed “the George Clooney of Flemish politics” headed the Flemish Christian democrat list at the European elections and was one of two CD&V MEPs elected. It will be up to Mr Peeters’ party to appoint a replace to serve as Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Employment, the Economy and Consumer Affair in the Caretaker Government that will remain in office until a new federal coalition is formed.    

Mr Kris Peeters only entered politics 15 years ago when the then Flemish Prime Minister Yves Leterme (Christian democrat) made him a minister in the Flemish Government. Prior to that Mr Peeters work for the small-business federation Unizo. In 2007 Mr Peeters succeeded Mr Leterme as Flemish Prime Minister. He led two Flemish Government and remained Flemish PM until 2014.

The landslide victory for the Flemish nationalists in the 2014 elections saw Mr Peeters hand over the leadership of the Flemish Government to the nationalist Geert Bourgeois. Mr Peeters’ party steered him towards federal politics, initially by putting him forward to, together with the Francophone liberal Charles Michel, form a new Federal Government. He then became the party’s Deputy Prime Minister in the Federal Government led by Mr Michel.

During his time in the Federal Government he often clashed with his Flemish nationalist coalition partners. Last year Mr Peeters’ attempt to become Mayor of Antwerp ended in disaster with his party winning just 3 of the 55 seats and being banished to the opposition. In the European elections on 25 May Mr Peeters gained 256,822 votes.