Brussels: new government to outline priorities for next 5 years

Six Belgian political parties have struck a deal to govern the Brussels Region for the next five years.  The new Brussels government has a majority both among Flemish and Francophone parties in the Flemish and Belgian capital.

The new team’s programme is expected to introduce a 30 km speed limit across large swathes of the Brussels Region by 2021, speak of a new metro line and new tram lines, while banning diesel-fuelled cars starting 2030. Petrol cars could be banned as early as 2035. A toll to enter Brussels is also possible.

Big investments are expected in social housing to combat Brussels’ backlog as well as in home insulation.

A pilot project for bilingual education is also being launched. Combatting youth unemployment too is a priority.

The Flemish greens, liberals and the social democrat list One.Brussels are teaming up with the Francophone socialists, greens and the Brussels democrats of DéFi.  The news of a breakthrough in the protracted negotiations came at 3:30AM. Francophone socialist Rudi Vervoort is again expected to lead the new team.

The new Brussels government will have four ministers, split equally between Flemings and Francophones, a language neutral PM as well as two Francophone and a sole Flemish junior minister.

The new Brussels regional government will not have any Francophone liberal ministers, though this was a demand championed by the Flemish liberals on several occasions.  The new government’s programme is being unveiled later today.  Party conferences will then be held to endorse each party’s participation in government and decide who will fill each ministerial seat.

The government will present its programme to the Brussels government on Thursday allowing the parliament to endorse the new team in time for Sunday’s national holiday.