Belgians should face ‘bitter truth’ – mayor – RT World News


Government policies have led the country into huge financial difficulties, Antwerp city leader says

The Belgian government’s energy policies have thrown the country into dire straits and brought it closer to debt-ridden Greece, the leader of the opposition Flemish New Alliance party has said.

It’s time for the Belgians to face « Hard reality » that their country is « bankruptcy, » Bart De Wever, who also holds a mandate as mayor of Antwerp, said in an interview on local television, quoted by the Belgian daily Het Laatste Nieuws.

“Look at our debt, government spending and the deficit. It’s worse than in southern Europe, » he said. “I have already said that after the next economic shock, we will be the new Greece. Unfortunately, this is now the reality.

De Wever, who leads a conservative Flemish nationalist political force, accused Prime Minister Alexander De Croo’s government of failing to prepare Belgium for the current EU energy crisis, contrasting the crisis with what the United States is going through. .

« The American people ain’t into that kind of shit. They did the opposite of what we did. They’re now oil and gas exporters, which certainly wasn’t the case 20 years ago. . he said.

President Barack Obama cited as one of the major achievements of his presidency the transformation of the United States into a net exporter of oil and fuel, which happened in 2018 and for the first time in decades.

The Belgian politician argued that EU membership of « green dogmas » has done little to prevent climate change, as strict standards simply push industries to other countries. Belgium and Germany were particularly « dumb » to phase out their stable of nuclear power plants, believes De Wever.

The current government confirmed its commitment to close the Doel nuclear power plant and the Tihange nuclear power plant in the December coalition agreement. The process of dismantling the seven Belgian units is due to begin this year, with a complete shutdown by 2025. The plan was to build government-subsidized gas-fired power stations to compensate for the loss of electricity production.

In March, the government announced that it planned to operate the relatively new Doel-4 and Tihange-3 reactors for ten years beyond the previous deadline of 2025, due to forecast energy shortages.

« It’s not a crisis that [Russian President Vladimir] Putin caused » De Wever argued in the interview. “Europe has taken it upon itself by phasing out its own primary energy production this century.”

The Flanders region, which has some energy-intensive industries, is particularly vulnerable to energy shortages, he added.

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