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Dutch ready to take hard line on EU spending plans and rebate

Thursday 22 November 2012

The Dutch parliament has sent prime minister Mark Rutte to a crucial two-day EU summit in Brussels with two mandates: to cap the EU’s spending plans and ensure the €1bn Dutch rebate continues.

The European Commission wants to increase the EU’s budget by 5% or €1bn, but the Netherlands, Britain and other western European countries are opposed to this.

Parliament on Wednesday debated the Dutch approach to Europe, with a majority of MPs calling for a reduction in the EU’s multi-year spending plans.

Spending cuts

The EU needs a ‘sober, modern and just budget,’ Labour MP Michiel Servaes said during the debate. At a time when EU countries are being forced to make painful spending cuts, it is hard to justify an increase in the budget for Brussels, he said.

MPs also want the prime minister to press for the Dutch contribution rebate of €1bn to continue. The measure was agreed in 2005 but is due to expire in 2014, when the EU’s new seven-year budget comes into force.

The Netherlands will remain a major net contributor to the EU coffers in the long term, prime minister Mark Rutte told MPs during Wednesday’s debate.

‘You cannot improve your net payment position in one EU summit,’ Rutte said. ‘It is a multi-year project.’

More on this
BBC Q&A on the two-day summit

Your thoughts on the EU budget? Use the comment box below.

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

I would love to see the Dutch take a hard line on the EU. I don't think you could print what I think of the EU. The European Commission wants an increase; why can't they let us just get on with our lives instead of always wanting more from us.... Why should the EU support the rest of the world? We want to live too.

By dee | 22 November 2012 10:33 AM

In 18 years the European Court of Auditors have not been able to approve the EUs accounts, corruption is rife in the new eastern members, fix this before we pay more. Furthermore isn't it time for France to accept these quasi-war reparations must end and their net contribution should be on a par with that of UK/DE/NL.

By Peter in Limburg | 22 November 2012 11:35 AM

The EU commission is a nightmare. Unelected clowns that have nothing better to do than to sit around and think of ways to rip member countries off. There! I said it and I'm glad:-p

By Al | 23 November 2012 9:31 AM

If you think the EU is a bad thing, then I suggest you read-up on Agenda 21 from the UN..most countries of the world have already signed up for this project, "Sustainable development"


By The visitor | 23 November 2012 12:59 PM

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