Dutch government formation: Negotiations ongoing, end out of sight

Edith Schippers (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl/Wikimedia Commonst)Edith Schippers (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl/Wikimedia Commonst)

After a week of government formation negotiations between the VVD, CDA, D66 and GroenLinks, it is still uncertain whether these four parties will manage to form a cabinet together. "There is absolutely no prospect of a result on any subject. We are not close to that phase yet", negotiation leader Edith Schippers said in a press conference on Thursday, NU.nl reports.

She stressed that the negotiations are only a week old, and that only eight topics - including the environment and finance - were discussed. "No subject has been ticked off yet", Schippers said. The parties are first looking for "a common foundation".

Schippers visited King Willem-Alexander on Thursday to discuss the progress of the formation.

Further insight into the talks between party leaders Mark Rutte (VVD), Sybrand Buma (CDA), Alexander Pechtold (D66) and Jesse Klaver (GroenLinks) and their seconds will not be given at this stage. Schippers would also not say anything about the biggest stumbling blocks, in case talking about them makes them bigger. "It is an intensive process", Schippers said. 

There will be no negotiations on Friday, Jesse Klaver wrote in a letter to all GroenLinks members, Het Parool reports. "Great, because now I can spend time with my children. Especially if it's such nice weather. After the weekend we'll continue with new energy", Klaver wrote.