On Monday Minister Stef Blok of Foreign Affairs will explain the Netherlands and Australia's decision to formally hold Russia accountable for its role in the downing of flight MH17 to a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Brussels. He is counting on unanimous support from the European Union on this decision, sources told newspaper AD.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte called the decision of United States president Donald Trump to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal "clumsy". The European Union leaders discussed this issue at an EU summit in the Bulgarian capital of Sofia on Wednesday, NOS reports.
The Public Prosecutor is investigating the involvement of seven Dutch companies in the construction of a bridge from Russia to Crimea. Due to EU sanctions against Russia, Dutch companies were not allowed to help build that bridge, NU.nl reports.
Minister Sigrid Kaag of of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation wants detention centers for asylum seekers in Libya to close as soon as possible, she said after paying a visit to such a center in Tripoli. She was horrified by the conditions in which asylum seekers live in these centers, RTL Nieuws reports.
Banning cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin is unfeasible, but the Dutch government wants to regulate the trade in cryptocurrency internationally to address the improper use of these digital coins, Minister Wopke Hoekstra of Finance wrote in a letter to parliament, NU.nl reports.
Hoekstra wants to bring cryptocurrencies into an "appropriate regulatory framework" without jeopardizing the technology's potential. He wants to make sure that the conversion of cryptocurrencies into regular money does not happen under the radar, for example.
The European Union must do more to stop the undocumented migration of asylum seekers through Europe, State Secretary Mark Harbers wrote in a letter to the European Commission, the Telegraaf reports.
The government considers it a major problem that asylum seekers can freely travel virtually anywhere through Europe to get to the country where they want to apply for asylum. Because of this, the Netherlands is getting a disproportionate number of asylum seekers, Harbers said to the newspaper.
Unlike French President Emmanuel Macron, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte doesn't want to push forward with integration in the EU. The EU is not an "unstoppable train speeding towards federalism", he said in a speech on his vision for the future of the EU in Berlin on Friday. He demanded that the Union works more for its Member States, instead of the other way around, the Financial Times reports.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte wants more clarity from the British government about the course they plan to take now that they're leaving the European Union, he said after his visit with British Prime Minister Theresa May on Wednesday.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte warned the Dutch agriculture and horticulture sector to prepare for a so-called hard Brexit - the United Kingdom leaving the European Union without signing a trade agreement. After months of talks between the EU and the UK, the parties are not yet close to an agreement, NU.nl reports.
"Keep the option in mind that it won't succeed", Rutte said. The British government plans to leave the EU on April 1st, 2019.
There is a "very distinct possibility" that Ryanair will have to suspend flights from the United Kingdom for "weeks or months" if the UK and European Union can't make a bilateral international aviation deal well ahead of the Brexit taking effect, Ryanair CEO Neil Sorahan told the Guardian.
Over 70 of the 751 European Parliamentarians sent a letter to Eurogroup chairman Jeroen Dijsselbloem demanding that he apologize for his "Schnapps und Frauen" statement and resign. The letter is singed by MEPs from 15 countries, including the German leader of the Christian Democrats, ANP reports.
The Dutch advisory council for international affairs AIV expects that a trade agreement with the United Kingdom will not be possible within the first two years of the Brexit. In a recommendation to the yet-to-be-formed new Dutch government, the council advocates for a transitional period after the UK's official departure from the European Union, ANP reports.
An increasing number of companies from the United Kingdom are considering making a move to the Netherlands. The main reason for them to move across the Channel is the fact that the Brexit will likely mean more difficult trading with the European Union from within Britain, NRC reports
The fact that British Prime Minister Theresa May announced last year that in addition to the EU, the Brits also want to leave the European internal market, reinforced many companies' determination to move across the Channel, according to the newspaper.
An increasing number of Bulgarians and Romanians are working in the Netherlands, according to Statistic Netherlands on Friday. The number of Bulgarian workers increased from 3 thousand in 2013 to 8 thousand in 2015, and the number of Romanian workers from 6 thousand to 13 thousand.
Most of the Netherlands' migrant workers stillcome from Poland, according to the statistics office. There are currently 205 Polish people living in the Netherlands, 156 thousand of whom have a job or their own business.
Minister Bert Koenders of Foreign Affairs thinks its time for Europe to change, now that "America First is the motto" of the new U.S. president Donald Trump, he said in newspaper AD. "Not more Europe, not less. We need a different Europe."
While Britain's departure from the European Union is yet to be set in motion, the Brexit is already costing Dutch companies money, according to the interest group for Dutch exporters Evofenedex. The uncertainty about the future trade relationship between the United Kingdom and the European Union already resulted in dozens of deals falling through, the group said to NOS.
The European Union could face collapse if nationalist parties win the elections in the Netherlands and France this year, German Minister Sigmar Gabriel of Economic Affairs said tto the Bundestag lower house of parliament, Reuters reports.
"After the Brexit last year, if enemies of Europe manage again in the Netherlands or in France to get results then we face the threat that the largest civilization project of the 20th century, namely the European Union, could fall apart."
Defense Minister Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert thinks that the world would do better to judge new American president Donald Trump on his actions and not on his tweets. Trump's twitter activity "causes a lot of debate and headlines and I don't think the world benefits from it", she said, according to newspaper AD.
King Willem-Alexander emphasized the importance of cooperating with NATO, the United Nations and Europe in his traditional New Year's speech on Tuesday. According to him, "a highly developed country like the Netherlands can not be indifferent to developments in the wider world", AD reports.
Peace, freedom, stability and prosperity don't just happen, the King said. "Without our international partners it is simply impossible. It is therefore good if our voice continues to be heard in Europe, the UN, NATO and everywhere people think past their borders."
On Monday United States president elec. Donald Trump said that he does not much care whether the European Union is divided or united, in interviews with newspapers Bild and The Times. He also called on other countries to follow Britain's example with the Brexit. European Commissioner Frans Timmermans read these statements with amazement. "We have never seen a U.S. president show interest in a divided Europe." he said to broadcaster NOS.
For the first time ever a list of endangered habitats in Europe was released, compiled by some 300 experts from over 30 countries working for three years on behalf of the European Commission. Across the EU there are 28 habitats that are considered "endangered" or "critically endangered". Fourteen of these habitats can be found in the Netherlands, Trouw reports.
In the Netherlands, endangered habitats include tidal rivers such as the Westerschelde and Eems, reed marshes in Noord-Holland and Zeeland, bogs like in Peel in Brabant among others, and sand banks such as the Veluwe.
The improving economy and falling unemployment have the Dutch population generally feeling less pessimistic about the future of the Netherlands. The majority of the population is still negative, however, according to a quarterly survey by social and cultural planning office SCP, ANP reports.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte got little support from the European leaders on his plan on how to deal with the Netherlands voting no in a referendum on an association agreement between the EU and Ukraine. His suggestion for a legally binding statement that will put the no-voters' concerns at ease, got a lukewarm reception at best, the Volkskrant reports.