The budget for 2007 presented today is ‘balanced’ and forms a ‘solid bridge’ on which to build the future, said Queen Beatrix this afternoon in her 27th speech from the throne.
According to public news broadcaster Nos the Queen’s tone was ‘optimistic but reserved’. The Queen began her speech by expressing support for Dutch troops stationed in Afghanistan. She stressed that as a ‘strong, wealthy and free country’ the Netherlands has a role to play in fighting conflicts, poverty and sickness and protecting the environment around the world. Moving on to domestic affairs, she went on to outline the importance of education, jobs, social welfare and culture and the need to work with the European Union to combat ‘the shadow’ of terrorism.
The Queen’s speech (which is written by the government) was followed by an address by prime minister Jan Peter Balkenende. ‘The Netherlands is working’ and can compete internationally, was Balkenende’s central message. He went on to identify four areas in which his government has booked success: more people have jobs, people feel safer, there is more respect for each other – ‘decency is no longer a dirty word’ – and fewer regulations. Balkenende: ‘I have the feeling that better times are coming and together we have been successful in creating new opportunities…. We can be proud of what we have achieved together.’
Thank you for donating to DutchNews.nl.
We could not provide the Dutch News service, and keep it free of charge, without the generous support of our readers. Your donations allow us to report on issues you tell us matter, and provide you with a summary of the most important Dutch news each day.Make a donation