"Cabinet ignoring signs of recession"
Liberal VVD leader Mark Rutte thinks that the cabinet is "sticking its head in the sand" with regard to an impending economic recession.21 January 2008
THE HAGUE – Liberal VVD leader Mark Rutte thinks that the cabinet is "sticking its head in the sand" with regard to an impending economic recession.
Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende and finance minister Wouter Bos are "waging ostrich politics" with their attitude that the financial crisis in the US will spare the Netherlands.
Rutte planned to call on Balkenende and Bos on Monday to repeal the tax increases that went into effect on 1 January. Rutte also wants them to organise a summit with professors and entrepreneurs.
Rutte's comments come in response to statements from President of the Nederlandsche Bank (DNB) Nout Wellink, who was more pessimistic about the Dutch economy on the television programme Buitenhof on Sunday than Balkenende and Bos were a week earlier.
Wellink said it was unwise for the cabinet to let the deficit in financing run its course. "Inflation is rising, the AEX is hitting rock bottom, the US is sliding into a recession and the president of the DNB is calling for action," Rutte says. "How many more warnings does this cabinet need?"
The VVD leader warned the prime minister and deputy prime minister that they had to come out of their "phase of denial." "If the cabinet does nothing, Balkenende and Bos will themselves be responsible for the economic consequences."
VVD MP Frans Weekers submitted written questions to Bos on Monday about Wellink's comments. He wants to know what the minister plans to do with this advice.
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2008]
Subject: Dutch news