Prime Minister takes just 10 minutes to explain how her special “corona government” will work

The Federal Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès (Francophone liberal) took just ten minutes to read out her new government policy statement in the Federal Parliament on Tuesday afternoon. The minority government that will enjoy the backing of a large portion of the opposition in its efforts to tackle issues related to the COVID-19 crisis. In her statement Ms Wilmès said that her government will focus on health, public order and the economic impact of COVID-19.

As regards other issues the Federal Government that will remain in office in its present form until September at the latest will only measures to the extent that it did while it was a caretaker government limited to taking decisions related to the day to day management of the various policy areas covered by Federal Government departments.

Here the government will remain within the budgetary constraints of so-called “provisional twelfths”. The system of “provisional twelfths” means that each month the government can spend a sum that is equal to one twelfth of the amount spent in the previous year. In addition to the provisional twelfths an additional 1 billion euro has been budgeted to be spend by Ms Wilmès’ government while it is in office.

The Prime Minister said that she intends to hold regular meetings with the members of the inner cabinet. Ms Wilmès also said that party that had agreed to support her temporary minority government in a confidence vote to be held on Thursday would also be regularly invited for talks. These parties include the Flemish and Francophone socialists and greens. A second confidence vote will be held in 6 months. The Flemish nationalists, the far-left PVDA-PTB and the far-right Vlaams Belang won’t be supporting MS Wilmès’ government in Thursday’s vote of confidence.

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