Michel to be BelgianEU Commissioner

19th July 2004, Comments 0 comments

19 July 2004 , BRUSSELS - Belgian Foreign Minister Louis Michel is set to become Belgium's new EU commissioner following a cabinet reshuffle.

19 July 2004

BRUSSELS - Belgian Foreign Minister Louis Michel is set to become Belgium's new EU commissioner following a cabinet reshuffle.

He will be replaced by Karel De Gucht, chairman of the Flemish Liberal Party (VLD) of Belgian Premier Guy Verhofstadt.

De Gucht was officially appointed to the foreign affairs post on Tuesday when King Albert II swore in Verhofstadt's new government.

Michel's nomination as commissioner-designate will also be submitted on Tuesday for the approval of the 25 EU governments.

He is expected to step into the shoes of outgoing Belgian Commissioner Philippe Busquin, currently in charge of the research portfolio, when he leaves the European Commission in October.

Michel's succesor in his other Belgain government post, that of Deputy Prime Minister, will be Didier Reynders.

Reynders, a fellow member of Michel's centre right Reform Movement (MR), will keep his current finance brief alongside his new duties.

The reshuffled cabinet will also include Deputy Prime Minister and Justice Minister Laurette Onkelinx, Interior Minister Partrick Dewael and Defence Minister Andre Flahaut.

Socialist Didier Donfut will become Secretary of State for European Affairs, with Armand de Decker taking over the Development Cooperation post.

Christian Dupont will be in charge of Public Administration, Cities and Equal Opportunities.

Bruno Tobback takes over as Environment Minister and Didier Donfut will take on the pensions portfolio.

[Copyright Expatica 2004]

Subject: Belgian News

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