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Queen Beatrix to stand down, the Netherlands will have a king

Monday 28 January 2013

Queen during her speech.png

Queen Beatrix is to stand down on April 30, 33 years to the day after her coronation. The queen is abdicating in favour of her son Willem-Alexander, who will be 46 on April 27.

In a short address, broadcast on radio and television, the queen said this year - which includes her 75th birthday and celebrations to mark 200 years of the monarchy - is a good time to step down.

‘I have been thinking about it for some time,’ the queen said.  ‘I am not standing down because the role is too heavy for me, but in the conviction that responsibility for our country should now lie with a new generation.’

King and queen

Willem-Alexander and princess Máxima are 'fully prepared for their future role' and will use all their talents to serve the country and keep faith with the constitution, she said.

Despite suggestions the new king will be known as Willem IV, this is not the case and the crown prince will continue to be known by his full name. His wife, Máxima, will be known as queen Máxima.

Willem-Alexander will be the first king of the Netherlands since the death of his great-great-grandfather William III 1890.

Máxima, the daughter of a former member of the Argentine junta, has also let it be known her parents will not be at the coronation in Amsterdam. They were not at Máxima’s wedding to Willem-Alexander either but did attend the christening of their children.

Dutch monarchs are technically not crowned but sworn in or inaugurated.

In a reaction to the news, prime minister Mark Rutte said the queen had put her heart and soul into the job. She is an icon, the prime minister said.

Abdication speech

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

I love your country but when are you going to dump the royalty.... What a big waste of money....

By Bill | 28 January 2013 8:17 PM

@Bill It can be seen as a waste of money, but I think for some countries, their monarchy is a very important symbol of their nation and sometimes of their independence. Sometimes, I could see an argument where that symbolism is very important. Like here in Scotland, I personally see the monarchy a symbol of our history as well as Englands'. Sometimes it is easy to forget why an institution exists, but it is not always best to rid ourselves of it.

By Cameron | 28 January 2013 9:51 PM

Oh Boy!

By Terence Hale | 28 January 2013 10:21 PM

Good luck to the out-going queen and in-coming king. Despite one reader's comment about ditching the monarchy, it's good that the dutch retain a sense of history, a national unifying symbol that transcends "diversity", economics, etc. otherwise NL wd appear a tired "everything for money" kind of place, without soul. We in the USA have a different tradition but regard others' with respect.

By Gerry | 28 January 2013 11:36 PM

Bill lots of things are a waste of money, just look at politicians for a start. The Dutch happen to be very fond of their Royal family, they are the glue that binds the country together. You can't put a price on tradition.

By Boris | 29 January 2013 2:44 AM


With respect,warmth,visible and with heart and soul for the Dutch Society.
Thank you.

By Nancy | 29 January 2013 7:38 AM

Bill, when the people of the Netherlands say that they are ready to get rid of the royal family.

By Kelvin | 29 January 2013 8:33 AM

I think the structure of having Queen and PM is far superior than having President and PM. In fact, I trust the Queen more than the PM for wanting a better future for NL.

By ufo | 29 January 2013 8:59 AM

Anyone know how much the Dutch monarchy costs NL? According to the UK Telegraph, 31 million pounds (36.2 million euros), about 1% of the annual budget expenditures.

By Puck | 29 January 2013 9:41 AM

@Kelvin: unfortunately no one will ever know when the people of the Netherlands say that they are ready to get rid of the royal family because there will never be a vote on it (ah, yes, the polls show that 90% or so watn monarchy, by which argument we might also abolish party elections)

By the_expat | 29 January 2013 11:12 AM

Better to have Kings and Queens than Politicials,Politicials are like Virus.

By Mark | 29 January 2013 11:26 AM

Ode to an oxymoron Democracy with a Monarchy...

Oh mighty Kings and Queens, only a few hundred years ago they would have crushed freedom of expression and killed under tyranny anything they did not like

And now the royal Kings and Queens enjoy money from the state and extensive other rare accommodation such as love and respect and posh service

Yet I wonder what is the difference me and the Queen and King, Am I not a woman and man like them...Yet why am I not a King or Queen...

Ode to an oxymoron Democracy with a Monarchy...

By Rui | 29 January 2013 12:55 PM

Why does another human being get special treatment ... This is the 21st century...There is no need for the state and people to support the monarchy with money...

If i stop working now I will have no home and food, yet The queen enjoys an extravagant lifestyle...

And ofcourse everybody loves the queen! If only they knew some history or the large sums of money involved!

By jane | 29 January 2013 1:04 PM

Goodbye, Queen Beatrix. I would applaud it even more if this was the end of an expensive and totally outdated puppetry. Are you aware of how much this "historical" charade costs us taxpayers per year? We could use the money for something important like real education for children, helping others... not for the royal family going on yet another holiday. And for those who think it's oh so important historically: read the history of the Netherlands, you will be surprised!

By Dr. Frankenstein | 29 January 2013 1:08 PM

I second Dr Frankenstein's notion. Maxima would make a better queen on her own if you ask me.

By Michael | 29 January 2013 5:23 PM

Seriously what is wrong with all monarch haters. It's not like UK where Queen is like everything and all you read is about the prince brothers and co. Here it's oranje, it's like identity that gives you some psychological advantage when e.g. communicating with some other people. And cost-other countries spend more on PR campaigns that you would just hear about them....

By Ozzy | 29 January 2013 11:17 PM

wow people are still defending the monarchy!?! one that costs the most in all of Europe and one that brings the least revenue...

why pay billions for just one orange day...

this is the 21st century , and today we get no privileges just from being born,

My brother is a post doc, thus he gets to use the title DR. in his name but he worked 8 years for it, yet king/queen/prince get such titles from just being born...

WAKE UP PEOPLE! use that orange money for something SIGNIFICANT and TANGIBLE

By ozzybourne | 30 January 2013 3:10 PM

Being stationed in The Netherlands was the BEST three years (1989-92) that I served in The United States Air Force! The Netherlands is a lovely country with beautiful people and I wish Queen Beatrix a long and healthy life and wish (soon-to-be) King Willem-Alexander and (soon-to-be) Queen Máxima a long and prosperous reign!

By John | 20 March 2013 3:54 PM

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