Regional body organizing consultations and social dialogue, the Walloon Region Economic and Social Council (CESW) comprises the social partners in Wallonia (representatives of employers and employees).


Instituted by a Decree of 25 May 1983, the CESW is often described as the "Social Parliament" of the Walloon Region.


The tasks assigned to the CESW by the 1983 Decree are :


  • conducting surveys, issuing advisory opinions and recommendations about all matters that come within the Region's sphere of influence, and those making an impact on the economic and social sectors in the Walloon Region;


  • organising consultations between both sides of business in Wallonia and the Government. For several years now, the CESW and the Walloon Government have been meeting at regular intervals so as to make progress on a series of issues of key importance for the economic and social development of Wallonia;


  • the secretariat for the Advisory Committees. These are made up of different partners depending on the subjects being addressed (the members of the Advisory Committees or Councils may include representatives of both sides of business, trade federations, the administration, universities, environmental protection associations, consumer protection associations, local authority groups, social organisations, public agents, etc.). The Advisory Committees issue advisory opinions about a whole series of regional issues (environment, land planning, heritage protection, etc.).


The CESW General Assembly has 50 members, whose terms of office are for four years, renewable.

The 50 members represent organisations representing workers, industry and major non-industrial companies, tradespeople and agriculture. The 50 members include:


  • 25 members presented by the «Union wallonne des Entreprises» (UWE), the «Entente wallonne des Classes moyennes» (UCM), the «Fédération wallonne de l'Agriculture» (FWA) and the «Union des Entreprises à Profit social» (UNIPSO);


  • 25 members presented by the «Comité régional wallon de la Confédération des Syndicats chrétiens» (CSC), the «Interrégionale wallonne de la Fédération générale du Travail de Belgique» (FGTB) and the «Syndicat libéral» (CGSLB).


The Bureau, the CESW's executive body, has 14 members plus 2 experts. Those who serve in the Bureau are the Chair (who is elected for two years according to the principle of alternating between the representatives of employers and employees) and the Council's three Vice-Chairs.


The Committees comprise representatives of and experts from the CESW's constituent organisations; these are tasked with preparing advisory opinions and considering matters presented to the CESW.


The Internal Services of the CESW are responsible for the secretariat and organising the proceedings of the various Committees. They enable the Council to duly exercise its activities for conducting surveys, carrying out research and issuing a series of publications.


A presentation folder is available (communication@cesw.be) for those seeking more details about the CESW (in French only).