3. 6. BELGIUM: The beginning of the 21st century

We have done a cross analysis from articles of different newspapers such as: El País, Washington Monthly and the Telegraph.

In 2007 there were elections in Belgium. The result was a government composed by some different Parties. This coalition government was broken due to different ideas about the electoral and judicial district Brussels-Halle-Vilvoorde, which is bilingual but has more francophone people.

Flemish Parties were in favor of maintaining the competences of the regions and communities, while Walloon Parties defended to preserve the status quo (‘existing state of affairs, particularly with regard to social or political issues’) (Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia).

In June 2010, there were new elections, and the leader chosen by the citizens was the President of the National Flemish Party (NVA), which roots for Flemish independence. Nonetheless, the impossibility of forming government due to the different ideas of the six parties which participated in the elections led to a situation by which Belgium was without government for nineteen months.

(El Mundo, 2011)

Despite the fact that the one who won the elections was a Flemish leader, whose Party was voted by around 6,5 million of flemish people, the Belgian President was finally a francophone leader. The coalition leader, Elio di Rupo, was the first Belgian francophone President since 1974.



The Walloons had an electoral census that surrounded the 4,5 million votes and  the new coalition government did not include the National Flemish Party. This Party expressed its discontent in the case in which there were more Ministers from the Francophone minority than from the Flemish majority.

Finally, we must highlight that the Belgians were forced to end their dispute and to form Government due to the start of the Euro crisis. As Belgium is heartquarters for the European Union and is its administrative territory, it was essential that the State was governed and that the parties achieve an urgent solution.

In the middle of all this conflict, the crisis of 2008 was emerging all around the world. The most important banks in Belgium had several and serious problems of liquidity, and the effects of the crisis were devastating: one of its biggest banks, Dexia, was bailed out by France and the Belgian State; Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg bought Fortis (the most important bank in Belgium), and many companies bankrupted. All of those factors and the political conflict sank the country during this period.Dexia_logo                     Lobo BNP Paribas Fortis


  1. El Mundo. (22 de 7 de 2011). Los partidos políticos de Bélgica se comprometen a formar Gobierno. El Mundo.


  1. El País. (1 de December de 2007). Bélgica agudiza su crisis política. El país.
  2. El País. (29 de September de 2008). Bélgica estudia tomar el control de Dexia para salvarla de la crisis. El País.
  3. El País. (1 de December de 2011). Bélgica cierra la crisis política con un acuerdo para formar Gobierno. El País.
  4. Smith, R. A. (9 de October de 2013). How Belgium Survived 20 Months Without a Government. Washington Monthly .
  5. Waterfield, B. (6 de December de 2011). Belgium to have new government after world record 541 days. The Telegraph.

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