Ymke Dirikx

Festival summer: “We can’t invite the whole world”

Belgian premier Alexander De Croo (Flemish liberal) has spoken of the prospect of staging several larger music festivals in Belgium in the second half of the summer. The consultative committee grouping the country’s governments and which has the final say on corona restrictions will consider the matter on Tuesday.

The Belgian leader was speaking after talks with the sector and the Flemish government:

“By August all adults will have had an opportunity to get vaccinated.  Belgium has great expertise in staging events. These are world class professionals.”

Flemish premier Jan Jambon (nationalist) speaks of greater opportunities as soon as the elderly and risk groups have been vaccinated: “Events with several hundred people can be staged in May and June.”

Mr Jambon believes events with larger numbers will be possible from July with Pukkelpop to be organised in August.

Belgian health minister Frank Vandenbroucke (Flemish socialist) notes festivals like Pukkelpop and Tomorrowland can only be staged when this is done safely. “People will have to use their corona passport.  People who are not vaccinated will have to be tested. Those that have been ill recently and have immunity will also be admitted.”

Tests will be carried out on site.  Only European visitors will be admitted.  “We can’t invite the whole world.  Even in Europe we need to be careful” says the Vooruit politician.

Organisers of Tomorrowland and Pukkelpop are cautiously optimistic but first want to hear on Tuesday what conditions they will have to meet.

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