Ministers: more building to ease recession

The maintenance of schools, bridges and roads and extra spending on insulating buildings are what ministeries say is necessary to reduce the effect of the recession on the Dutch economy, the Volkskrant reports on Monday.

The paper asked ministry officials what suggestions they have made to the committee of senior civil servants currently drawing up a package of measures to tackle the recession for the government.
The committee is expected to present its plans to ministers later this week.
The suggestion to spend on infrastructure is aimed at keeping Dutch cash within the Netherlands, the paper says.
However, the paper points out that major projects (over €5m) have to be put out to European tender. And the possibility of spending more on improving the country’s infrastructure has been hit by a looming €20bn shortfall in the budget.
Pension age
Other options being considered by the committee include raising the retirement age, reducing mortgage tax relief, cuts to unemployment and child benefit and the scrapping of tax benefits for non-working parents with young families.
This weekend, the leaders of the two Dutch Liberal parties, the right-wing VVD and Democrats D66, said an increase in the state pension age from 65 to 67 is inevitable. And in terms of life expectancy, the pension age should really go up to 72, they told tv show Buitenhof.
A TNS Nipo poll for RTL news this weeked showed that 56% of the population is open to an increase in the official retirement age.
In the Netherlands only one in four men and one in 10 women work past the age of 60.

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