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Bureaucracy delays Brussels' Bruegel museum plan
Plans to open a Brussels museum to mark 450 years since the death of Flemish painter Pieter Bruegel the Elder have been put on hold because of bureaucratic issues.
The October 2019 inauguration of Bruegel House, on Rue Haute in the Marolles, was meant to be the focal event in a year-long celebration of the artist's life and work.
The 15th-century building had been donated to the Royal Museums of Fine Arts, which was prepared to invest €1 million of its own money in the project - or about a third of the budgeted cost - from its €5 million reserve fund.
Flemish tourism authorities had agreed to top up an €1.6 million to fund the museum, as part of a bigger campaign to promote the works of the Flemish Masters.
But RTBF reports that the investment has been blocked due to a rule requiring all major spending by Belgian federal agencies - such as the Royal Museums - to be approved by ministers.
A spokesperson said the museums were not seeking any additional federal funding - but they were still preventing from digging into their existing reserves to fund the project.
RTBF adds that the delay means that funding the museum in the future will be further complicated, as Flanders' contribution was specifically set aside to come out of the 2019 budget.