Self government

The Congress assessed the application of the European Charter of Local Self-Government in Belgium

A delegation from the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, made up of rapporteurs Matthias Gysin (Switzerland, ILDG) and Magnus Berntsson (Sweden, EPP/CCE) carried out the first part of the monitoring visit to Belgium from 8 to 10 March 2022 to assess the implementation of the European Charter of Local Self-Government from the previous follow-up report passed by Congress in 2014.

The rapporteurs had exchanges of views on the latest developments in the field of local self-government in Belgium with representatives of local authorities and regional parliaments, including certain institutions in Brussels. Meetings were planned with Roger Stevens, First President of the Council of State, with representatives of the Constitutional Court as well as with Marc Bertrand, Mediator of Wallonia and the Wallonia-Brussels Federation, Bart Weekers, Mediator of Flanders, Marlene Hardt , Mediator of the German-speaking Community and with Catherine De Bruecker, Mediator of the Brussels-Capital Region.

Meetings also with Liesbeth Homans, President of the Parliament of Flanders, Rudy Demotte, President of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation/Parliament of the French Community as well as with Philippe Close, Mayor of Brussels, Pierre Rolin, Mayor of Rhode-Saint-Genèse, members of the municipal council of Namur and Wim Dries, mayor of Genk and president of the Association of Flemish towns and municipalities (VVSG).

The Congress delegation also met the members of the Belgian national delegation to the Congress and the Presidents of the Association of the city and municipalities of the Brussels-Capital Region, the Cities and Municipalities of Wallonia (UVCW) and the Walloon provinces (APW).

Belgium ratified the European Charter of Local Self-Government in 2004. Countries that have ratified the Charter are bound by its provisions. The Charter requires the implementation of a minimum set of rights which form the essential basis of local self-government in Europe. The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe ensures that these principles are respected in the 47 member states of the Council of Europe.

Stéphanie POIREL, Secretary of the Monitoring Committee
Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe
Telephone: +33 (0)3 90 21 51 84
Email: [email protected]

Teresa R. Cabrera

The author Teresa R. Cabrera