Dutch government nears crisis deal

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The government will have to finalise details of the deal with the workers’ unions and employers’ organisations before coming to a final agreement.

THE HAGUE – The three parties in the Netherlands' governing coalition have nearly reached an agreement on additional measures to deal with the economic crisis after three weeks of coalition talks.

While details of the deal remain unclear, the cabinet has reportedly agreed to raise the state pension age to 67. Unions and employer representatives are due to join the talks Tuesday before the final proposal is announced.

Sources also said parties have agreed to implement spending cuts worth EUR 5 billion for 2011. It was also reported that the Labour Party won a concession that the severity of these cuts will depend on how far the economy has bounced back by then.

Reports by Telegraaf reveal that ministers have also agreed to attribute EUR 6 billion to extra investments and tax cuts. The flight tax will be scrapped and investments that can boost employment figures would be encouraged.

Before the government plans to prop up the economy can be implemented, an agreement with workers' unions and employers' organisations must be reached.

The Netherlands' biggest union, FNV, announced on Sunday that they are not satisfied with the proposals and are preparing protest actions to demand changes in the government crisis plan.

Radio Netherlands / Expatica

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