High school students across the Netherlands hung their school bags on flag posts on Thursday to show that they passed their final exams. This usually happens as soon as the results of the central exam are in, but due to these tests being scrapped because of the coronavirus crisis, the Ministry of Education and the association for school pupils LAKS decided to create a national graduation day, NU.nl reports.
The coronavirus crisis will just about drain Amsterdam's financial reserves by the end of this year, finance alderman Victor Everhardt said in the Spring Letter for 2020. The financial consequences of the pandemic in Amsterdam are expected to amount to 260 million euros this year. "Should the deficit amount to the estimate, this means that the General Reserve position is expected to be around zero at the end of 2020," he said.
The energy bill for Dutch households with a variable energy contract will decrease by an average of 6.6 percent as of July 1. That amounts to an average decrease of around 101 euros annually, price comparison site Pricewise said on Thursday based on energy rates at Vattenfall and Eneco.
At the two energy suppliers, the variable gas tariffs fell the most with a decrease of 20.4 percent. Electricity prices will be 9.62 percent lower as of July 1.
The government should continue to encourage employees to work from home in order to prevent everyone from taking the car or public transit again after the summer, according to the Coronavirus Crisis Think Tank, an initiative of the social and economic council SER. In education, a combination of online and physical education must be found, the think tank said, Het Parool reports.
In 2017 the Dutch ambassador to Nigeria, Robert Petri, leaked confidential information about an extensive corruption investigation into Shell to the oil company itself, NRC reports based on information revealed in an integrity investigation into Petri. The ambassador warned Shell that it was under investigation over bribery allegations.
Primary school De Springbok in The Hague closed its doors after two teachers tested positive for the coronavirus, a spokesperson for umbrella organization De Haagse Scholen confirmed to NU.nl. The school board decided to close the primary school as a precaution and go back to distance learning for the time being.
The two infected teachers have been at home since the weekend. They received their test results on Tuesday. Seven pupils also started showing symptoms that could indicate a coronavirus infection. They will be tested soon.
Various flexible workers in the Netherlands, including students who only worked a few hours per week, will become eligible for financial assistance if they lost income as a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. A new program announced by Wouter Koolmees, the Minister of Social Affairs, will allow people who qualify to claim 550 euros per month for the months of March, April, and May.
The HMM Algeciras, the largest containership in the world, docked at the port of Rotterdam on Wednesday afternoon. The Korean ship is 400 meters long and 51 meters wide - about the size of 3.5 football pitches. It is carrying a record 19,621 containers, which is still 4 thousand less than its capacity.
The ship docked in the Amaliahaven in the Maasvlakte to unload containers at Rotterdam World Gateway. It has a capacity of 23,964 TUE, which stands for Twenty feet Equivalent Unit and expresses the number of standard containers the ship can transport.
Hospitality association KHN is calling on restaurant owners to report if they were fined for not adhering to social distancing rules over the past days, a spokesperson confirmed to NL Times. The association is looking into whether these fines can be fought in court. According to KHN, these fines are unfair given that no social distancing fines were issued at a crowded demonstration in Amsterdam on Monday.
Since the start of the coronavirus lockdown in the Netherlands, the people who work from home became more satisfied about the way they work, according to a survey by Nationale-Nederlanden and Crunchr among nearly 2 thousand people working from home, ANP reports.
In April nearly 134 thousand passengers traveled to, from, or through the five national airports of the Netherlands, a decrease of 98 percent compared to April last year, Statistics Netherlands reported on Wednesday. Freight transport decreased by 25 percent to 103 thousand tons transported weight. The decreases are largely attributed to restrictions in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
The Dutch government is teaming up with municipalities, housing associations and other involved parties to create 10 thousand extra living and shelter spaces for homeless people by 2022. A new approach to reducing the number of homeless people in the country also focuses on renewing social care and more support for homeless people in their new lives. The government already promised 200 million euros for this support.
Online supermarket Picnic does not have to pay Formula 1 driver Max Verstappen damages for using a lookalike of him in a video posted on Facebook in 2016, the Amsterdam court of appeals ruled on Tuesday. There was no infringement of portrait right as the actor was clearly not Verstappen himself, and the video was a parody of an advertisement Verstappen did for Jumbo, the court ruled.
EasyJet plans to start flying from Schiphol again from July 1, the airline announced on Tuesday. The number of flights will be lower due to reduced demand, but the airline plans to ultimately fly to 35 destinations from the Amsterdam Airport, NU.nl reports.
"Thanks to the routes we will be flying again from July onwards, business travelers can make their essential trips again, people can be reunited with friends and family abroad, and hopefully also go on summer holidays if measures allow this," William Vet, manager of EasyJet Netherlands, said to the newspaper.
The coronavirus crisis could lead to a new euro crisis, the Netherlands office for economic policy analysis CPB said after analyzing the vulnerabilities of the financial system.
Despite coronavirus support measures implemented by the government, businesses and households are facing increasing financial difficulties. And if the recession continues for some time and more debts become impossible to repay, households and businesses may pull financial institutions down with them, the CPB warned.
The catering industry in the Netherlands is still in danger, despite restaurants, bars, and cafes being allowed to open with anti-coronavirus measures on Monday. While people went out to support their local terraces, some places were much quieter than expected. And the weather will not always be warm and sunny, KHN, the industry association fo restaurants, cafes, and hotels, said to Het Parool.
After closing in mid-March due to the coronavirus pandemic, secondary schools in the Netherlands are opening their doors again for larger groups of students on Tuesday. In the last weeks before the summer holidays, students will be allowed to go to school again, but not all at once, ANP reports.
From today, NS trains and other public transit will be running largely according to schedule again. It is mandatory to wear a mask on public transit. "The following still applies: only travel if you really have to and avoid busy places and times," NS advised its travelers.
A total of 14,934 new passenger cars were registered in the Netherlands in May, a decrease of 59.2 percent compared to the 36,601 new vehicles registered in the same month last year, NU.nl reports based on figures from BOVAG, RAI Association, and RDC.
The sector organizations attribute the sharp drop in demand for new cars to the coronavirus crisis and measures to curb the spread of the virus. In addition, almost all car factories in Europe and beyond were closed over the past week due to the crisis.
There will be no forced layoffs at the Dutch branch of Tata Steel in the reorganization of the Indian steel group. Trade union FNV threatened labor actions if Tata Steel did not comply with existing employment retention agreements. And in response, Tata Steel Europe released a statement stressing that there will be no changes in the "status of the structure and agreements that have already been made," NOS reports.
The Central Student Council (CSR) of the University of Amsterdam filed a lawsuit against the university's board of directors regarding the use of surveillance software Proctorio when students are taking online exams. The CSR wants students to be able to refuse the use of this software, citing privacy concerns, Folia reports.
Starting today, it is mandatory to wear a mouth mask on buses, trains, trams, subways and any other form of public transit in the Netherlands. Those who do not wear a mask, will be fined 95 euros. Traveling with public transit is still meant for only necessary trips at this stage of the coronavirus lockdown.
With sunny and warm weather forecast for the Netherlands today, and catering establishments being allowed to open their doors for the first time since mid-March, the day is expected to be busy throughout the country. But the mayors in the Security Council, comprised of the 25 security regions in the Netherlands, are confident that Netherlands residents will adhere to social distancing rules in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus.
Despite bars, restaurants and cafes finally being allowed to reopen in the Netherlands on Monday, many will be keeping their doors shut for the time being. Many of the smaller establishments physically can't manage to adhere to social distancing and keep everyone 1.5 meters apart. And some who can will be able to accommodate so few customers that opening is not financially possible, AD reports.