Belgian government agrees new term for central bank’s Wunsch

BRUSSELS (Reuters) -The Belgian government has agreed on a new term for the country’s central bank governor and European Central Bank policymaker Pierre Wunsch, a government spokesperson said on Wednesday.

The new mandate will run until Dec. 31, 2029, the spokesperson added. The news was earlier reported by national news agency Belga.

The National Bank of Belgium had asked Wunsch, in office since early 2019, to stay on in a temporary capacity after the end of his term in 2023, as political wrangling among Belgium’s top parties prevented an official extension.

Wunsch was among the first ECB policymakers to foresee renewed inflation, calling for tighter monetary policy even when most others insisted that rapid price growth was temporary and easy monetary policy remained appropriate.

The bank embarked on an unprecedented rate hike streak in mid-2022, taking the deposit rate to a record high 4% after inflation peaked above 10%.

(Reporting by Bart Meijer, Tassilo Hummel, Charlotte Van Campenhout; Editing by Jan Harvey and Sharon Singleton)