Multinationals and the wealthy taxed more heavily – Lego puts 400 million euros in sustainable blocks

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1. Multinationals and wealthy people are taxed more heavily

Multinationals, large companies that do not invest, the wealthy and the self-employed will be subject to more severe taxation in the coming years. Savers, starters and people with a permanent job can count on tax benefits. Retired civil servants and care workers in particular are expected to experience the first pension cuts. These are the main points of the Budget Memorandum and the purchasing power picture, which Minister of Finance Wopke Hoekstra presented to the Lower House on Tuesday afternoon.

The most important fiscal measures for Prinsjesdag:

  • Increase of the capital exemption in box 3 to € 50,000 (€ 100,000 for tax partners). Three million people who still pay capital gains tax will not do so next year;
  • The low corporate tax rate has decreased from 16.5 percent to 15 percent. The high rate remains 25 percent. The latter rate applies from 2021 to a profit of more than 245,000 euros.
  • The self-employed person’s allowance will be further reduced to € 3,240 in 2036;
  • There will be a new tax deduction for companies to encourage targeted investments, for which € 4 billion will be available in the next two years.

2. King: ‘Brace yourself for consequences of economic downturn’

King Willem Alexander painted a moderately positive image in the Speech from the Throne and called for solidarity. He praised the resilience of the Netherlands, but could not deny that things are going a bit less financially. For example, the government expects a budget deficit of € 45 billion in 2021, against € 56 billion this year. Support for companies, entrepreneurs and employees will amount to € 46 billion this year and next, and tax revenues will fall by € 16.6 billion. The national debt will rise to € 502 billion next year, or 61 percent of GDP. “Now we have to brace ourselves for the consequences of a severe economic downturn,” said the king in the speech from the throne.

3. LEGO wants a sustainable block

In the coming years, LEGO will invest 400 million dollars (almost 337 million euros) in, among other things, the search for a way to make the colorful bricks from sustainable materials. Now the company still uses plastic made from oil. The Danish toy manufacturer wants to produce in a climate-neutral way by 2022 and make the blocks from sustainable raw materials by the end of the decade. LEGO has been struggling for years with the search for an alternative to plastic. Over the past five years, a team of more than 150 engineers and scientists has tested all kinds of plant and recycled materials. “The challenge is to get blocks that have the same color, shine and sound,” said Tim Brooks, vice president of LEGO.

4. Ingrid Thijssen now really chair of VNO-NCW

She had already been announced and had been around for a while, but yesterday Ingrid Thijssen really succeeded Hans de Boer. Thijssen, coming from grid operator Alliander, is the new face of the corporate lobby, but this time it had to do without the annual networking event par excellence: the Prinsjesdagborrel. Instead, Thijssen organized a webinar, where she questioned Prime Minister Mark Rutte (VVD) and ministers about cabinet policy – under the watchful eye of interested parties who were projected on the big screen behind them. She said she was concerned about the corporate image.

Also read: ‘Women should not drop out’ (mt.nl, 2016)

5. Third aid package curbs unemployment growth

Due to the third support package for companies, unemployment will rise somewhat less rapidly next year than previously estimated, says the Central Planning Bureau. The CPB now thinks that unemployment will be 5.9 percent next year, last month the expectation was 6.5 percent. But should there be a second wave of corona cases, with another lockdown, unemployment will rise to 8.5 percent next year, according to the Macro Economic Outlook of Budget Day. For this year the CPB expects an economic contraction of 5 percent, followed by growth of 3.5 percent next year. That is slightly better than previously expected

6. Must read: The Belgians run the Dutch newspaper

Now that Mediahuis also wants to add the NDC newspapers to its holdings, it is more or less done: almost all Dutch newspapers are owned by two Belgian publishers. How could the Belgians conquer the Netherlands? Jeroen Piersma of the FD maps out the reasons. Love, money and faith play a crucial role.

7. Coffee machine: The king, his income and the purchasing power

Expenditure for the royal family will increase from 44.4 million to nearly 45.7 million in 2021. That is stated in the budget of the royal family. Most of it, almost EUR 30.5 million, goes to the king for his functional expenses. The members of the royal family together receive almost 8.9 million euros as a benefit. That is more than 3.5 tons more than this year. In total, the king will receive more than 6 million euros, the queen more than 1 million and Princess Beatrix more than 1.6 million. On average, purchasing power in the Netherlands is expected to increase by 0.8 percent in 2021. King Willem-Alexander plus 5.2 percent.

Catch up on news? Read yesterday’s 7.


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