SM King Albert II is still working hard to bring the political leaders together to form a government for Belgium. Four months gone from the election with no government, the King started new efforts on Wednesday after the Flemish nationalists said negotiations were at an end. The King has in public expressed his concerns over the continued political stalemate and he asked Prime Minister Yves Leterme to work with the parliament to put forward their best efforts to reach a solution for the economic and social welfare of the Belgian citizens in this long period of inactivity without a government. State reform still remains the most divisive issue for the political parties to agree on. These days it is fashionable to ridicule or tease the King of the Belgians but I really think we should all be proud of him. What a difficult position for him to be in the middle of and yet he is working constantly to try to get these politicians who act like spoiled children to stop their feuding and come together for the good of his country. They are looking out for themselves and their own jobs but it is only the King in this situation who is looking out for the people and for Belgium!
The east has been meeting the west in Belgium. First, on 4 October SM King Albert II attended the Asia-Europe Meeting in Brussels while the Queen entertained the wives of the visiting political leaders at the Royal Palace. The day after the King met with President and First Lady of the Republic of Korea, Lee Myung-bak and Kim Yoon-ok, at the palace, hosting a special dinner in their honor. And finally yesterday, in anticipation of an official visit, the King met with the Premier of the People's Republic of China, Wen Jia-bao. All of these meetings and visits are of even greater importance than the usual diplomatic purposes. Recent reports have shown that the bulk of the world's wealth, for the first time in many, many, many centuries, is moving from west to east as the Asian economies expand and the economies of Europe and North America fall deeper in debt. So, everyone seems to have the impression that we need to be extra nicer to these countries!