After months of a government crisis in Belgium, ten parties have agreed to support incumbent Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès in the fight against the coronavirus epidemic. For the first time, Wilmès could get a majority in parliament, but only to curb Covid-19 and the economic consequences. To this end, it should also receive special powers of attorney for a maximum of six months.
The government has been in office since the fall of a coalition in autumn 2018 without its own majority. The Liberal Wilmès was only able to rely on 38 of the 150 members of parliament. Even after the parliamentary election of May 26, 2019, no new coalition succeeded. An attempt by the Flemish nationalist party N-VA to form a transitional government failed on Sunday. The French-speaking socialist party PS declined because, in their view, coalition talks in the crisis would have taken too long.
Instead, after hours of talks on Sunday, the parties agreed on a different model: the existing coalition of the minority government is to continue and is temporarily supported by outside parties such as N-VA, PS, Greens and other parties. On Monday, the two liberals Sabine Laruelle and Patrick Dewael King Philippe, who will be responsible for the explorations, will present the proposal. It is expected that Wilmès will then be officially commissioned to form a government and will vote in confidence in Parliament on Thursday.