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Bernard Clerfayt News

Bernard Clerfayt

Bernard Clerfayt is a prominent figure in Belgian politics. Bernard Clerfayt served as mayor of Schaerbeek in 2001 and as vice-president of the Front Démocratique des Francophones (FDF).Read more
Clerfayt was born on December 30, 1961, in Uccle, Belgium. He holds a master's degree in economics from the Université Catholique de Louvain (UCLouvain), where he began his academic journey while working as a research assistant at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven's Centre for Economic Studies. Clerfayt's political career commenced in 1985 when he took part in the Schaerbeek local unit, leading to his successive appointments as 2nd Deputy Mayor and, ultimately, Mayor of Schaerbeek.

Clerfayt’s political tenure further expanded with his election to the Brussels Parliament in June 1989 and subsequent re-elections, demonstrating his enduring influence and commitment to public service. Clerfayt has been actively involved in various initiatives throughout his career, including spearheading efforts to enhance animal welfare and presenting legislative proposals to address economic migration and labour shortages. His leadership during challenging times, such as coordinating responses to terror threats and promoting digital transition in municipalities, underscores his dedication to serving the community and advancing progressive policies.


Bernard Clerfayt begins his career either in law, public administration, or academia.


Bernard Clerfayt becomes increasingly active in politics, focusing on community issues and social welfare.


Bernard Clerfayt serves as a member of the Belgian Chamber of Representatives.


Bernard Clerfayt elected as Mayor of Schaerbeek, a municipality in the Brussels-Capital Region.


Bernard Clerfayt remains active in local politics, working to address the needs of Schaerbeek residents and contributing to the governance of the Brussels-Capital Region.

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Bernard Clerfayt, the Brussels Minister for Digital Transition and Employment, announced the upcoming third edition of Digital Spring, scheduled for March 24 and 25, 2023, at the RESET building in Brussels. Read more
The event, aimed at promoting digital transformation, features various digital initiatives enhancing daily life in the Brussels-Capital Region. Attendees explore coding, robotics, virtual reality, and user-friendly apps with activities, conferences, demonstrations, and workshops. The theme is "Digital in the Air," focusing on using data from cameras, sensors, drones, and satellite systems for intelligent applications like air quality monitoring and telecommunications. Clerfayt highlighted the event's role in raising awareness about digital technologies, job opportunities, and training in the digital sector. He highlighted Digital Spring as an interactive experience encouraging visitors to explore, develop, and potentially pursue digital professions. Practical information about the event, including dates, locations, and contacts, was provided for interested parties.

Bernard Clerfayt, the Brussels Minister in charge of Local Authorities, issued a press release on September 19, 2023, emphasising the importance of encouraging more non-Belgians to participate in municipal elections in Brussels. Clerfayt underscored the democratic significance of their involvement in the electoral process, with only 15% of non-Belgian residents exercising their right to vote in the previous municipal elections despite comprising 36.9% of the capital's population. He announced a call for projects aimed at associations to develop initiatives promoting voter participation in the upcoming municipal elections on October 13, 2024. The initiatives, funded with a budget of €150,000, aim to inform and engage residents about the electoral system and their voting rights. Clerfayt stressed the need to include all inhabitants, including non-Belgians, in electing their local representatives to ensure a more representative democracy in Brussels.

Bernard Clerfayt, Brussels Minister for Local Government, addressed the topic of human composting in response to a query from the Home Affairs Committee on January 18, 2024. Clerfayt confirmed that human composting, commonly known as 'humusation' or 'terramation,' is prohibited in Brussels. The statement came after regional authorities in Wallonia expressed interest in the practice and commissioned a study at the Faculty of Bioengineering at UCL. Clerfayt stated that the study revealed the inefficiency of human composting, with remains not decomposing within the prescribed time and posing a risk of nitrate and ammonia pollution in the soil. Clerfayt highlighted the ongoing examination of environmentally friendly options such as aquamation by an inter-regional working group despite acknowledging the demand for greener alternatives.


Bernard Clerfayt addressed the demands of domestic helpers on June 23, 2012, at the Brussels Minister of Labor's offices, promising concrete measures to improve their working conditions. He pledged to establish a working group comprising all relevant authorities to address concerns raised by unions.Read more
Clerfayt's commitment was satisfied by demonstrators, with Sébastien Dupanloup of FGTB Service vouchers expressing gratitude for their primary demand being acknowledged. Clerfayt's deputy chief of staff, Caroline Daux, conveyed plans for significant reform in Brussels Capital, highlighting the region's leadership in chairing the upcoming working group. Daux underscored the aim of the reform to be effective by 2024, aligning with the timeline set by FGTB Titles-Services. Clerfayt's assurance reflects his dedication to prioritising the health and well-being of domestic workers, as Dupanloup emphasises "prior and periodic health monitoring," among other demands.

Bernard Clerfayt, Brussels Minister of Local Authorities and mayor on leave of Schaerbeek addressed the circumstances surrounding the alleged perpetrator of the recent attack in Brussels on October 17, 2023. Clerfayt clarified that Abdelsalem L. has been solely on the waiting list for refugee candidates since 2019 and has been nowhere else. He underscored the administrative nature of the listed address, stating, "The address which appears on this list is an administrative address which is not necessarily that of the person's place of residence." Clerfayt pointed out the responsibility of the federal body in managing registrations and deregistrations, highlighting the complexities of asylum seeker accommodation. He concluded by explaining why Abdelsalem L.'s wife and daughter were not on the list, citing Belgian nationality as the reason.

Who is Bernard Clerfayt ?

Bernard Clerfayt, born on December 30, 1961, in Uccle, stands as a prominent Belgian politician, assuming the mayoral office of Schaerbeek in 2001 while concurrently serving as the vice-president of the Front Démocratique des Francophones (FDF). Bernard Clerfayt has occupied a seat in the federal Belgian Chamber of Representatives since 2007, embracing the Belgian tradition of holding a dual mandate. 

Clerfayt graduated from the Université Catholique de Louvain (UCLouvain) with a master’s degree in economics in 1986, paralleled by his tenure as a research assistant at the Centre for Economic Studies (Centrum voor Economische Studien) at the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven. He completed an internship at the International Monetary Fund in Washington, D.C., followed by roles in academia as a research and teaching assistant, ultimately earning esteemed chairs in macroeconomics and political economics at UCLouvain, the Faculties of Catholic Universities in Mons and the Faculties of Lille (1984-1997). He spent around a decade in academia, teaching macroeconomics and international economics at numerous Belgian universities, both French and Dutch-speaking.

Clerfayt entered politics in 1985, joining the local section in Schaerbeek before becoming mayor in 2001. He has since maintained a multifaceted political career, serving in various capacities, including Vice-president of the Brussels Regional Council and President of the Committee for Town and Country Planning and Land Policy. He assumed the mantle of Secretary of State for Finance in 2008, spearheading efforts to modernise the Department of Finance, implement green taxation initiatives, and combat tax fraud. Clerfayt’s re-election as mayor of Schaerbeek in 2012 underscores his enduring political influence and commitment to governance.

Bernard Clerfayt biography is illustrated in the table below.

Personal Information of Bernard Clerfayt
Full Name Bernard Clerfayt
Birthday December 30, 1961
Spouse No Information Available
Number of Children No Information Available
Position Mayor of Schaerbeek
Education Masters Degree in Economics (Université catholique de Louvain)1+52
Position Term Preceded by Succeeded by
Mayor of Schaerbeek 2001 - Present
Vice-President of the Front Démocratique des Francophones (FDF) -
Member of the federal Belgian Chamber of Representatives Since 2007
Secretary of State for Finance 2008 - 2010
President of the Committee for Town and Country Planning and Land Policy -
Vice-president of the Brussels Regional Council -
Member of the Brussels Parliament 1989 - 2004
2nd Deputy Mayor of Schaerbeek 1995 - 2001
Chair of Macroeconomics and Political Economics at UCLouvain, Facultés universitaires catholiques de Mons, and Facultés Universitaires de Lille 1984 - 1997
Research and teaching assistant at UCLouvain and Katholieke Universiteit Leuven 1986 - 1989

What is Bernard Clerfayt’s Political Party?

Bernard Clerfayt’s political party is DéFI. The party supports expanding Brussels’ bilingual position to certain municipalities in the Brussels Periphery (in Flemish Brabant, Flemish Region), where Dutch is the dominant language, but French is the predominant language. DéFI advocates for the rights of French speakers residing in Flemish municipalities to communicate with Dutch-speaking officials in French rather than Dutch. Flemish political parties hold opposing views on both positions. They advocate for the Dutch language to be taught to French-speaking residents of the Flemish Region and contend that the process of francizing Brussels must not expand further into the region. FDF party news about their name amendment happened in January 2010. The party name was amended to Francophone Democratic Federalists (Fédéralistes Démocrates Francophones) while maintaining its original acronym. 

The party changed its name to DéFI in November 2015. Clerfayt became Schaerbeek’s mayor in 2000 after the FDF (previously DéFI) won elections. The following constitutes Schaerbeek’s renewal confirmation: fiscal equilibrium, police reform, reorganisation of social assistance policy, and neighbourhood renovations. Bernard Clerfayt was Federal Secretary of State for Finance for nearly four years, starting in 2008. He led financial modernisation, tax fraud prevention, and environmental taxation projects.

What is Bernard Clerfayt’s Educational Background?

Bernard Clerfayt’s Educational Background is marked by earning a master’s degree in economics from the Université catholique de Louvain (UCLouvain) in 1986. He worked concurrently as a research assistant at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven’s Center for Economic Studies (Centrum voor Economic Studies). He then transitioned to the IRES (Economic Analysis Service) at UCLouvain, where he embarked on a career as a teaching assistant and research assistant. His subsequent career included tenure at UCLouvain, Facultés Universitaires Catholiques de Mons, and Facultés Universitaires de Lille as chair in Macroeconomics and Political Economics.

How did Bernard Clerfayt begin his career?

Bernard Clerfayt began his career in politics after dedicating several years to scientific research, teaching, and an internship at the International Monetary Fund research department. Bernard took his initial steps in politics, transitioning to Schaerbeek in 1985, building upon a familial background in public service; his father, Georges Clerfayt, had been elected as a deputy to the Federal Parliament when Bernard was just nine years old. Bernard Clerfayt pursued a scientific career before entering politics, earning Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in economics and teaching Macroeconomics and International Economics for nearly a decade across various Belgian universities, French-speaking and Dutch-speaking. The combination of academic expertise and early political exposure laid the foundation for Clerfayt’s multifaceted career.

When did Bernard Clerfayt become the Deputy Mayor of Schaerbeek?

Bernard Clerfayt became the Deputy mayor of Schaerbeek in 1985. He cemented his ties to the community by affiliating with the local section in Schaerbeek, marking the inception of his dedicated service to the region. Bernard Clerfayt has repeatedly demonstrated his commitment to the municipality and displayed astute leadership, leading him to the esteemed position of second Deputy Mayor in Schaerbeek, establishing himself as a critical figure in the development and governance of the municipality.

How was Bernard Clerfayt’s career developed in politics?

Bernard Clerfayt’s career development in politics is listed below.

  • Joined the local unit in Schaerbeek: Clerfayt’s initiation into local politics began when he entered the Schaerbeek local unit in 1985.
  • 2nd Deputy Mayor of Schaerdeek: Bernard Clerfayt’s growing power in Schaerbeek town was visible when he evolved into the 2nd Deputy Mayor in 1995.
  • Mayor of Schaerdeek: Berard Clerfayt solidified his place as a leader in the local government in 2001 by becoming Mayor of Schaerbeek.
  • Member of the Brussels Parliament: Bernard Clerfayt joined the Brussels Parliament in June 1989.
  • Belgian Chamber of Representatives: Bernard Clerfayt attained recognition within the field of federal politics in 2007 with his election to the Belgian Chamber of Representatives.
  • Secretary of State for Finance: Bernard Clerfayt became Secretary of State for Finance in 2008, undertaking major tasks like reforming the Department of Finance and adopting green taxation.
  • Mayor of Schaerbeek: Clerfayt persistently held the position of Mayor of Schaerbeek in 2010, showcasing his dedication to municipal governance, notwithstanding his federal obligations.

What is Bernard Clerfayt’s current position in the Belgian Government?

Bernard Clerfayt’s current position in the Belgian government is as Minister of the Brussels-Capital Region. Bernard Clerfayt, Brussels-Capital Region Minister since July 18, 2019, has a diverse portfolio across three key Brussels organisations. His responsibilities include Employment and Professional Training, Digital Transition, Local Authorities, Animal Welfare, regional IT, and administrative simplification. He serves as a Member of the United College of the Common Community Commission (COCOM) and is responsible for coordinating family allowances, civil service matters, finances, budgets, external relations, and minors’ access to cinema theatres with the Minister of Community Affairs. Clerfayt oversees training and professional retraining, relevant educational institutions, and international contacts as a member of the Council of the French Community Commission (COCOF). 

What are the Important News about Bernard Clerfayt?

The important news about Bernard Clerfayt is listed below.

  • Bernard Clerfayt, the mayor of Schaerbeek, played a significant role in coordinating efforts to ensure public safety in Brussels amid heightened security measures and a citywide lockdown following terror threats on November 23, 2015. Clerfayt addressed concerns about the presence of two suspected militants as the city remained on high alert for terrorists believed to be in the Brussels region, emphasising the need for vigilance and preemptive action to thwart potential attacks. Clerfayt stresses the importance of anticipating, preventing, and monitoring any impending threats in collaboration with regional politicians and law enforcement agencies. His statements to RTBF radio reflected a coordinated effort to disseminate crucial information to the public and maintain transparency amidst the ongoing security crisis. Clerfayt’s leadership and communication were instrumental in reassuring citizens and coordinating efforts to safeguard the community during a challenging time.
  • Bernard Clerfayt, the mayor of Schaerbeek, played a pivotal role in the unfolding events on March 26, 2016, amidst the aftermath of the Brussels terror attacks. Belgian police, bolstered by heavily armed troops, conducted raids in the northern Brussels borough of Schaerbeek, resulting in the arrest of a suspect connected to the suicide bombings that rocked the city. Clerfayt confirmed the detainment of the suspect, as reported by Belgian public broadcaster RTBF, who was apprehended after sustaining injuries and was allegedly linked to the tragic events of Tuesday’s bombings. Witnesses recounted the tense scene, with police reportedly shooting the man at a tram stop while his daughter accompanied him. Controlled explosions were heard in the area, indicating the heightened security measures undertaken by authorities under Clerfayt’s jurisdiction during such a tumultuous time.
  • Bernard Clerfayt, the guardian minister of Molenbeek, suspended the municipality’s tax on self-checkout cash registers, as reported by La Dernière Heure on Tuesday, August 23, 2022. The tax, amounting to 5,600 euros per cash register, was halted based on several arguments by Clerfayt. He highlighted that the availability of manned cash registers still allows customers to opt for human interaction if desired, thus negating claims of dehumanisation of work. Clerfayt emphasised that cashiers supervise self-checkouts, countering the municipality’s tax implementation rationale. The decision to suspend the tax aligns with the Brussels government’s commitment to digital transition in the region, as stated by Clerfayt. The move aims to prevent potential counterproductive consequences on the development of Brussels, as highlighted by the government’s decision. The Brussels Chamber of Commerce, Beci, had expressed opposition to the tax imposed by Molenbeek.
  • Bernard Clerfayt, the Minister of Employment for Brussels, presented a preliminary ordinance on economic migration to the Brussels Parliament on December 5, 2023. The primary objective of such an initiative was to update and streamline current legislation to tackle labour shortages in the area effectively. It conforms to administrative practices and EU standards while accommodating changes to the state’s structure by harmonising provisions from two laws into a unified framework. The ordinance aims to enhance the economic interest and competitiveness of the Brussels Capital Region by facilitating foreign worker employment during periods of labour scarcity and establishing a solid legal framework. The proposition incited discussion, as groups such as the League of Domestic Workers and the Committee of Undocumented Workers voiced apprehensions regarding the inability of undocumented labourers to obtain the aforementioned permit. Minister Clerfayt clarified that the ordinance does not address regularisation concerns, underscoring the federal government’s exclusive jurisdiction concerning residence rights. Clerfayt intends to overcome obstacles in the labour market and provide legal certainty to employers and employees by implementing the legislative initiative.
  • Bernard Clerfayt, along with regional Animal Welfare Ministers Ben Weyts and Céline Tellier, spearheaded the ‘Call to Care for Animal Welfare’ event held in Brussels on January 29, 2024, marking a concerted effort to elevate animal welfare concerns on the European agenda. The event, which drew policymakers, experts, and stakeholders from various European member states, underscored the pressing need to prioritise animal welfare initiatives at the European level. Clerfayt’s active involvement in organising the event reflected his commitment to championing animal welfare causes and driving meaningful legislative change. Participants discussed key themes, including the economic viability of implementing enhanced welfare standards and innovative approaches to breeding practices. Clerfayt’s leadership, alongside his regional counterparts, emphasised the imperative of collective action to address animal welfare challenges comprehensively. Clerfayt sought to galvanise support for tangible reforms that ensure the well-being of animals across Europe by calling for heightened attention to animal welfare issues on both a regional and EU level.

What is Bernard Clerfayt’s Net Worth?

Bernard Clerfayt’s net worth is estimated to be between $1 million and $5 million. The esteemed Belgian politician has seen a significant increase in his net worth in 2022-2023, reflecting his continued success and influence in the political sphere. Clerfayt’s income stems predominantly from his public service and governance role, which he is known for for his dedication and strategic leadership. His noteworthy contributions to the political landscape of <a href=””>Belgium</a> underscore his stature as a prominent figure in politics.

What are Bernard Clerfayt’s Political Ideas?

Bernard Clerfayt’s political ideas revolve around proactive leadership, public safety, and social and economic welfare. Clerfayt adopts a proactive stance in addressing neighbourhood concerns and managing public safety operations, notably in response to the Brussels terror attacks and the subsequent citywide lockdown in November 2015, underscoring his dedication to security as demonstrated during his tenure as Schaerbeek mayor and Brussels minister. His recent ‘Call to Care for Animal Welfare’ event in January 2024 exemplifies his commitment to progressive policies benefiting all residents, including animals. Clerafyt’s legislative initiatives addressing economic migration and labour shortages underscore his proactive approach to fostering economic growth and stability in the Brussels Capital Region. Bernard Clerfayt champions progressive beliefs and initiatives while prioritising safety, welfare, and economic development for his community.