Economic affairs minister Henk Kamp has reportedly told his Belgian counterpart that he does not see any benefits to PostNL’s takeover by Bpost.
PostNL has rejected Bpost’s €2.5bn offer, saying it sees no advantages to giving up its independence and that a takeover would give the Belgian government control of Dutch delivery services.
Kamp told Alexander De Croo that a takeover would be ‘a backward step’ given that the Dutch company has been fully privatised, the Telegraaf reported.
De Croo, however, says the takeover contest is up to the two countries concerned. ‘Any discussions should be made without political inference,’ Dutch media quote him as saying.
Kamp had been under fire in parliament for what some MPs said was not doing enough to defend Dutch interests.
A number of Dutch public utilities are already under the control of foreign states. For example, Dutch energy company Nuon is owned by the Swedish state via energy firm Vattenfall. State-owned German railway group Deutsche Bahn owns Arriva, which operates train and bus services in the Netherlands and the French state has a major indirect interest in bus company Connexxion.
At the same time, Dutch state-owned train company NS operates train services in England and Scotland.
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