State to scrap up to 18,000 jobs in five years, 25% of budget to go

The national government apparatus will be slimmed down radically between now and 2018, saving €4.2bn, government services minister Stef Blok said in a briefing to parliament on Wednesday evening.

In total, between 12,000 and 18,000 of the 150,000 national civil service jobs will go, offices will be closed and policy areas streamlined, Blok said. The government currently spends some €17bn on running the country.

‘In a financial crisis, it is unavoidable that the government offers fewer services,’ Blok said in the briefing. ‘The government must also work more efficiently at a time when we are asking the same of a lot of people.’


Similar targets to cut government spending have been criticised by the government’s CPB policy unit and the general audit office in the past, news agency ANP points out.

Civil service union Abvakabo says it supports efforts to make the government apparatus more efficient but has serious doubts about such drastic cuts in the workforce, ANP reports.

According to Nos, the government has reached agreement with the unions that there will be no compulsory redundancies.

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