The European Commission hopes for an agreement to change the time by the end of the year

The European Commission hopes that member States and the European Parliament will be able to reach an agreement to end the two-year changes in Europe’s clock by the end of this year, transport Commissioner Violetta Bulk said on Friday.

She hopes 31 March 2019 will be the last time Europe switches to Daylight Saving Time (DST). By April, every member State needs to have submitted its choice for maintaining the summer or winter hour.

In theory this means Belgium and the Netherlands, for example, could have different times, but the European Commissioner says she has no doubt member States will make the effort to coordinate their choices.

Ending the hour change requires a qualified majority of member States and a simple majority in the European Parliament.

The Belgian Government has indicated its support for the idea of ending the time switch, as favoured by a large majority of the 50,000 Belgians who responded to a public consultation launched by the Commission. Only in Greece and Cyprus did a majority come out in favour of keeping the old system of changing the clocks for summer and winter.

That consultation also found that 56% of respondents preferred to remain on summer time and 32% on winter time. Preferences vary from country to country. In Belgium more respondents were in favour of maintaining summer time, while in the Netherlands, the opposite was true.

The author: Michel THEYS

Michel Theys, a Belgian native, began his career as a civil servant, serving the public for several decades. After retirement, he shifted gears to follow his passion for journalism. With a background in public administration, Theys brought a unique perspective to his reporting. His insightful articles, covering a wide array of topics, swiftly gained recognition. Today, Michel Theys is a respected journalist known for his balanced and thoughtful reporting in the Belgian media landscape.

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