De Boer is not directly opposed to the introduction of European taxes. “If you, as a large entity, take Europe loans out of the market, you also have to say: I am going to repay them in a certain way,” he says. According to the VNO-NCW chairman, there are three ways of doing this: “Either all countries will pay more contributions, or we will cut costs, or you will collect your own money.” As the plans are now, it probably comes down to the latter. “I may not really like collecting my own money, especially from companies, but this is the direction it is headed.”
The Netherlands would rather see loans in the recovery fund than gifts, and these loans must be subject to strict conditions regarding reforms. This attitude is partly due to the fact that southern European countries such as Italy are on a sizeable mountain of debt.
According to De Boer, there are “terribly good” elements in the plans for the recovery fund of the European Commission in which the Netherlands also has an interest. “It is said that part of that money goes to other countries in the form of gifts. With gifts, everyone thinks of a gift. That is nonsense, ”says De Boer. “The money is going in directions that enhance the productivity of the economy and is bound by guidelines.”
The committee wants to help not only Member States, but also viable companies and sectors through the crisis. Member States that knock on the door for help in Brussels must submit investment and reform plans. These plans should focus on greening, digitization and strengthening the economy.
However, according to some, these guidelines are not strict enough. For example, it talks about eternal loans, without interest. That is not a gift, but you never have to pay it back. The criticism is not justified, according to De Boer. It is not for nothing that these types of loans are used, he emphasizes. “If they do that in current expenditures and they surprise it, it is not going well. But that is not the intention. ”
“It is fine that we have that discussion, but we as entrepreneurs argue that we, as a whole, should keep all of Europe going. Europe is a value in the world. We should be happy with that. It would be nice for the Netherlands if we had a more constructive discussion about this ”, De Boer believes.
According to De Boer, it is good that the Netherlands takes a critical look at these kinds of plans. “But it would grace us if we showed our warm heart, also to the Southern Europeans, and at the same time say a little Dutch: can we handle the money wisely. That’s the other way around, that’s not good. ”
The rest of the $ 750 billion goes to companies in the European Union that lose a huge amount of equity. “They are building up their debts. A huge amount of that money goes there, strengthening equity. The whole of the Netherlands has an interest in this, and we have to follow up on that, ”says De Boer.
The plans will be discussed by government leaders in the coming period. Indeed, the plans require unanimous approval from the 27 Member States.
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By: Marinka Wagemans