The formation process

The election of a new House of Representatives is followed by the formation of a new Cabinet, which is a complex and exciting process.

As a rule, the leaders of the political groups will appoint a "scout" immediately after the elections. This scout holds a consultation with all the parties. No later than one week after the elections the House has a plenary debate on the election result and the Cabinet formation procedure. In this debate the House can designate one or more so-called informateurs, who examine which parties are ready to form a coalition and any obstacles which have to be overcome. The House of Representatives in its new composition decides on the exact assignment to be given to the informateur(s).

Before 2012

On 27 March 2012, the House adopted a change of the rules governing the formation process, laid down in its Rules of Procedure. The aim of the amendment was to enable the House of Representatives to take the initiative in the formation of a new Cabinet. Before the House decided to amend its Rules of Procedure, the Head of State played a key role in the formation process, which followed an established pattern. After consultation with their advisers, the Head of State appointed an informateur, whose task was to explore the possibilities to form a Cabinet that would gain sufficient support from the House of Representatives. Once the information process had yielded a clear result, the Head of State appointed a formateur.