This evening, the Belgian Federal Parliament (House and Senate) adopted a Declaration containing the articles of the Constitution that can be amended by the next Federal Parliament.

The Declaration includes two specific articles relating to telecommunications.

Article 23 of the Constitution was declared open to amendment, explicitly with a view to enabling the next Federal Parliament to create a constitutional right for citizens to Universal Service for post, communications and mobility.

Article 29 of the Constitution was also declared open to amendment. This article concerns the secrecy of letters. In the explanatory memorandum filed with the draft of the declaration,  reference was made to the extension of the secrecy of letters  to 'new forms of communication' and 'other forms of correspondence'.

The same Declaration confirms the contents of the Declaration of 2007 (not discussed in detail by the Federal Parliament), which enables institutional reform, including the potential for responsibility over telecommunications to be moved from the Federal level to the federated entities.

Update late 7 May 2010: The final text of the Declaration, published in the second edition of the Moniteur Belge/Belgisch Staatsblad, is accessible by clicking here.