Federal Government wins confidence vote after marathon debate on “State of the Union”

After a marathon debate in the Chamber of Representatives the Federal Government received the backing of 81 Federal MPs in a confidence vote on Thursday evening. 59 opposition MPs voted against the government. 

The debate and the vote of confidence followed Tuesday’s budget and “State of the Union” in which the Federal Government outlined its plans for the coming year. After a debate on the budget and the government’s plans in general that lasted until the early hours of Thursday morning, MPs spent much of Thursday questioning individual ministers about the plans for their respective departments. 

The two largest opposition parties, the Flemish national N-VA and the far-right Vlaams Belang took plenty of time to question ministers at length about the budget and the policy statement.  During Thursday thematic debate N-VA’s Sander Loones and Vlaams Belang’s Wouter Vermeersch both said that the budget lacked credibility.

Nevertheless, the Federal Secretary of State responsible for the budget Eva De Bleeker (Flemish liberal) said that this year’s budget marks the start of the road to budgetary recovery and that as far as she is concerned budgetary recovery is the way to keep public debt under control.

Ms De Bleeker added that before the current Federal Government took office just over a year ago public debt was heading towards 120% of GDP and that "This scenario has been averted”


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