Today’s Volkskrant focuses on the amount of money the new government appears to have spent on PR – the budget is €45m for the year, but the prime minister’s office told the paper it did not have an overview of total spending so far.
‘Nevertheless, it is obvious that that strategic media management, as the coalition itself calls it, is extremely important to the government,’ the paper says.
It lists some of the events: the ministerial round-Holland bus tour, the children’s summit which cost €280,000, the mass meeting between ministers and the public in Utrecht (bill €236,000), the ‘working together’ project to keep ministers in touch with the public through blogs, the daily polls and surveys of public opinion – all organised by PR bureaus such as Planet Event, Kuiters, Siliogogo and Dagjetelevisiemaken.nl.
Then there are the 850 press and public information officers. Even the prime minister’s weekly press conference has been moved from the parliamentary press centre to the state information service offices, so there is better control over who says what, the paper points out.
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