The Flanders Informal Summit 2020

The Flanders Informal Summit 2020

The Flanders Informal Summit 2020

The Flanders Informal Summit can look back on a successful edition. Despite the fact that the DNA of our event was so deeply affected – the Summit thrives on networking – we managed to offer a substantively strong and visually attractive digital alternative.

Former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon issued a passionate plea for embracing diversity, solidarity and sustainability. We must work together as global citizens to tackle the complex crisis that is affecting all nations.

Prime Minister Alexander De Croo, our studio guest, supported Ban Ki-moon’s appeal and underlined the importance of diversity. “A diverse group – one that mirrors our society – definitely takes better decisions”, he said. De Croo went on to underline that low-skilled workers are at greater risk of contracting Covid-19 due to risky working environments. Absolutely crucial for the development of a vaccine is solidarity among nations, a global citizenship. "No one will be safe until everyone is safe”, he said.

Marleen Temmerman pointed to a worrying trend that the coronavirus crisis has unleashed in poorer parts of Africa: “the population is becoming poorer as a result of the crisis and people are reverting to traditional practices.” As global citizens we must take up the fight and put women’s rights back on the map.

Leading industrialist Paul Stoffels hopes to bring a vaccine onto the market within 3 to 6 months. “Living with the virus is virtually impossible. Restrictions and discipline will continue to be of crucial importance.” As a true organ lover, Stoffels is looking forward to the vaccine contributing to a revival of the arts.

Knack and Le Soir picked up the marathon allegory that the Prime Minister used to such striking effect to describe our battle with the virus:

"We have run the first five kilometres of the marathon at full speed, and now we’ve gone into the red. We will succeed in getting the numbers down, but then we have to keep them at a manageable level for a long period of time. The experts are currently working out how we can achieve this.”

The Flanders Informal Summit was streamed exclusively to invitees from the Old Fish Market in Ghent. Flanders Festival Ghent offered a musical contribution with Arvo Pärt and Collegium Vocale Gent.

The entire debate will be broadcast from Monday 2 November to Friday 6 November inclusive on Kanaal Z/Canal Z, at 8 am, 1 pm and 6 pm each day.



The informal summit is a collaboration between: