Martijn van Dam (Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Partij van de Arbeid) - Credit: Martijn van Dam (Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Partij van de Arbeid)
Dutch government not compensating farmers for storm damage
The Dutch government will not be compensating farmers in Limburg and Noord-Brabant for damage sustained in recent storms, State Secretary Martijn van Dam of Economic Affairs said on Tuesday. He can see that the storms were very bad, but they were not a natural disaster and there will therefore be no financial compensation, NOS reports. The sector estimates the damage done by storms and heavy rain to be around 500 million euros. Farmers' organizations LLTB and ZLTO called on the government to classify it a natural disaster and help farmers out with the damages. Van Dam visited a number of companies in Limburg on Wednesday morning and will be heading to farmers in Brabant in the afternoon. After seeing damages first hand, he stated that he is not prepared to declare the region a disaster area. According to Van Dam, storms do not fall under the concept of disaster and farmers are able to insure themselves against it. He did, however, promise to work on better insurance for the industry and to fight in Brussels against companies losing their subsidies now that the storms put them temporarily out of work.