Slowly, slowly, catchy monkey for Mr Magnette

Two more weeks King Filip has given PS leader Paul Magnette in order to sort Belgium’s woes and put formal federal government formation talks on the tracks.

The leader of the Francophone socialist party, Parti socialiste, was entrusted with the job of informing the monarch on opportunities to form a new federal government on 5 November. It was expected that Mr Magnette’s mission would be extended, but the extra fortnight, and not just a week, points to the complexity of the challenge he faces. The extra fortnight also means that the outcome of leadership elections for the Flemish Christian democrats and Francophone liberals will be known.