Cabinet developing plan to aid low-income households with inflation, high energy costs
Finance Minister Sigrid Kaag said that the Cabinet was working on a plan to offer financial support to economically disadvantaged people under strain from soaring energy costs and inflation. However, it is less likely that those who are financially stable will receive any assistance. It is not yet clear how those with a middle income will fare.
According to AD, the deputy prime minister is conscious that it will not be possible to give compensation for inflation and energy bills to everyone in the Netherlands. This is because she wants to focus on the coming generations and not pass the bill to them.
Nevertheless, she reassured the public: “I understand it worries people that a big part of your income goes on your energy bills. We are in the process of working through this and thinking of a solution. There will be a solution, you can be sure of that.”
The solution will be likely geared towards those with lower incomes. Energy bills have risen by 86 percent in one year, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS). This equates to 110 euros more per month on gas and electricity for the average household.
The plan will see further development in the spring, because Kaag is still waiting for macroeconomics statistics on the situation. She also noted the government’s investment agenda on climate and defense was very important.
“Investments are equally needed in safety and climate," Kaag said. "Also to guarantee the jobs of the future. But we still have to discuss this within the Cabinet.”
Kaag will only work within "budgetary frameworks" and refuses to let the budget deficit increase to aid the public’s purchasing power. After March 9, the economics data will be reviewed and a decision will be made calmly and methodically, she said. However, Kaag did admit that purchasing power is unlikely to be repaired by the end of the year, saying, "The options are limited.”