VVD manifesto targets ‘society with ambition’

A 3% across the board tax cut, free creches, no increase in the retirement age and a three-year profit tax exemption for start-ups are among the main points of the Liberal party (VVD) election manifesto, published on Monday.

In total, the party plans to spend € 17 bn on new initiatives, cash which will be raised by cutting welfare benefits, reducing healthcare spending and clawing back cash from social housing corporations. The party also plans to scrap the OZB home owners tax and halve inheritance tax.
‘If we can put our plans into practice, the average family will have €1,400 more to spend over the next four years,’ Ben Verwaaijen, the British Telecom boss who drew up the manifesto said at the launch. The VVD, currently lying second in the opinion polls behind Labour, also wants to slash civil service numbers and cut the number of MPs from 150 to 100.
Labour (PvdA) leader Wouter Bos said the VVD wanted to ‘fund all its nice little plans by cutting social security and healthcare spending’. The Labour party was also in favour of tax cuts, he told the Volkskrant newspaper, but not for people who did not need them. The VVD’s junior wing JOVD also criticised the draft manifesto for not including a pledge to raise the retirement age. The manifesto still has to be approved by party members.

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