On Tuesday King Willem-Alexander opened the Netherlands' parliamentary year with his traditional Budget Day speech. He talked about the devastation Hurricane Irma left of the Caribbean islands that form part of the Dutch Kingdom, terrorism around the world, the prosecution of those responsible for the MH17 disaster, and making sure that everyone in the Netherlands benefits from the improving economy, among other things.
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte has mixed feelings about European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker's plans for the European Union, which he revealed in the annual State of the Union address on Wednesday. "I like the short term ideas", Rutte said about the speech. "But there are also issues I like less", AD and the Telegraaf report.
Large Japanese bank Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group (MUFG) filed a license application to set up a new subsidiary in Amsterdam, so that the financial group can continue to serve customers in the European Union after the Brexit, the bank said in a statement.
"The new subsidiary in Amsterdam will ensure that the Group can continue to provide these services to its EU clients, even if the cross-border passport is lost as a result of Brexit," the bank noted. Currently, the EU customers are served by a subsidiary based in the United Kingdom.
Sint Maarten can count on a financial contribution from the Netherlands to help it recover from the devastating effects of Hurricane Irma, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said on Tuesday evening, according to Metro Nieuws. He did not mention any amounts.
Sint Maarten hopes that the island can recover from the devastating effects of Hurricane Irma within a year or two, deputy minister of the island Henrietta Doran-York said after a national council meeting in The Hague on Tuesday. She also praised the cooperation between the Netherlands and Sint Maarten in the run-up and aftermath of the hurricane, and refuted criticism about a lack of preparation for the hurricane, RTL Nieuws reports.
The Netherlands plays a big role in money laundering in the European Union, according to Europol. In 2014, over a quarter of suspicious bank transactions in the EU were reported by Dutch banks, the Telegraaf reports.
The banks in Europe reported almost a million transactions they suspected involved money laundering in 2014. Dutch banks reported 277 thousand suspicious transactions. Only Great Britain reported more, with 350 thousand.
The fipronil contaminated egg scandal is spreading to more and more countries. Since it was discovered that the toxic pesticide was used illegally in the Netherlands and Belgium a few months ago, 45 countries found fipronil in their eggs and egg products, the Telegraaf reports.
The European Commission wants to organize a summit type meeting for EU food safety minsters about the crisis surrounding eggs being contaminated with toxic insecticide fipronil, EU Commissioner Vytenis Andriukaitis said in a statement. He wants this meeting to put an end to the infighting and accusations, RTL Nieuws reports.
Over 16 percent of Dutch households say they have too little money to go away on holiday one week per year, according to figures from Eurostat. That is well below the European Union average, where 33 percent of households can't afford a vacation, NOS reports.
The Netherlands is ranked 6th on the list of EU whose residents go on holiday most. Sweden counts the most vacationers - only 8 percent of households stay home year round. Luxembourg, Austria and the Scandinavian countries are also above the Netherlands on the list.
Dutch refugee organization VluchtelingenWerk and ice cream brand Ben & Jerry's are working together to try and convince European politicians to take in more vulnerable asylum seekers from shelters across the world. Today they launched a campaign titled Home Safe Home, AD reports.
"This is one of the biggest problems of this moment. We are talking about it in the Netherlands for the first time. We have young supporters and we want to activate them for this", Laura van Geel, social mission manager of Ben & Jerry's said to the newspaper.
Dutch nationals in the U.K. considering taking British citizenship in order to avoid complications after the Brexit, must be aware that they will lose their Netherlands passport due to existing limits on dual nationality, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said, according to The Guardian.
The memorial on the third anniversary of the MH17 disaster started at 2:00 p.m. at the site of the National MH17 Monument in Park Vijfhuizen, next to Schiphol airport. The search for the perpetrators behind MH17's downing continues, but finding a way to move on is just as important, Evert van Zijtveld said on behalf of the survivors' foundation Vliegramp MH17, according to AD's live blog of the memorial.
Dutch bank ING expects that electric driving in Europe will only increase as the main obstacles for switching to electric cars continue to decrease. By 2035 only electric cars will be sold in Europe, according to the bank, RTL Nieuws reports.
A study by the bank showed three main reasons that consumers aren't immediately switching from petrol and diesel cars to electric cars. 40 percent found it too expensive, 28 percent say they can't drive far enough on a fully charged battery, and 20 percent said there are no charging poles in their area.
There was no confusion about the Netherlands stance at the start of the talks about Britain's departure from the European Union in Brussels on Thursday. "I hate the Brexit from all angles", Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said as he arrived at the summit, according to ANP. "You are one of our most beloved partners. But the Brexit is a decision of the British people and you can't argue wit democracy."
Amsterdam dropped 21 spots on Mercer's list of most expensive cities in the world for expats. The Dutch capital is now in 85th place, down from last year's 64th position. On the list of European cities, Amsterdam is still 12th most expensive, Het Parool reports.
The official outcome of the election in the United Kingdom on Thursday is still unknown. But it is certain that Prime Minister Theresa May's Conservative Party will lose its absolute majority. While anti-Brexit Jeremy Corbyn's Labour party gained ground. What consequences this will hold for the Brexit is unclear. We'll have to wait and see, is what Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte has to say on the matter.
Young people in the Netherlands use more drugs than their counterparts in other European cities, according to an annual report by the European Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA). In the age group 15 to 34 years, Dutch were on the top of the list when it comes to ecstasy use in 2015, NOS reports.
A massive 6.6 percent of Dutch in that age group use ecstasy. Ireland comes in a far second place with 4.4 percent. The European average is 1.8 percent.
The United States' plans to ban laptops and tablets in the cabins of flights from Europe, was put on hold after the European Union decided against implementing it in an hours long meeting in Brussels on Wednesday. Other measures are still being considered, BBC reports.
The Dutch government debt was 32 billion euros lower than expected at the end of 2016, according to the Annual Financial Report Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem presented to the senate and lower house of parliament on Wednesday, ANP reports.
The United States' plan to ban laptops and tablets on flights to America is unsafe, according Dutch pilots association VNV. If the U.S. has its way, laptops and tablets will only be allowed in the cargo area of a plane. But according to the VNV, this forms a great danger of lithium batteries catching fire. "That has happened in the past. Such a fire can not be extinguished, because the crew can't reach the cargo area during a flight", Joost van Doesburg of the VNV said to NOS.
Many banks and financial institutions moving to Europe after the Brexit, are shunning Amsterdam due to the Netherlands' cap on bonuses. While the rest of the European Union capped bonuses at 100 percent of the fixed salary, the Netherlands' cap is 20 percent of the fixed salary. The banks fear losing talent to the competition, being forced to pay irresponsibly high salaries to keep employees and do not feel welcome in the Netherlands, Financieele Dagblad reports after talking to a number of companies assisting banks in their move to the EU mainland.
Netherlands residents have slightly more confidence in each other and the authorities, such as the police and judiciary, according to figures Statistics Netherlands released on Monday. Data from 2015-2016 shows that 60 percent of Dutch older than 15 trust their fellow human beings. That is 2 percent more than the 58 percent who trusted the rest of society in the period 2012 to 2014. A clear majority of 70 percent of Dutch have confidence in the police and judiciary.
The European economy is continuing its steady growth, and for the first time in a long time all EU countries saw economic growth. The European Commission expects that the EU economy will grow by 1.7 percent this year and 1.8 percent in 2018. The Netherlands is outperforming the EU average with expected economic growth of 2.1 percent this year and 1.8 percent in 2018, the Volkskrant reports.