Dutch parties reach deal after marathon coalition talks

Dutch parties reach deal after marathon coalition talks

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THE HAGUE: Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte is set to present a new government pact on Tuesday, after four parties concluded more than 200 days of negotiations to form a coalition in the Netherlands.

The coalition talks were the longest since World War II as the parties tried to overcome wide differences on issues ranging from taxes to euthanasia and migration, a topic that dominated the elections in which the anti-Islam party of Geert Wilders finished second. Among key policy issues decided are tax cuts of around 5.5 billion euros (£4.9 billion) for workers and a further reduction in mortgage interest deductibility.

A plan by the progressive Democrats 66 coalition partner to widen euthanasia will not get the full support of the coalition government, with opposition from the two other Christian parties, the CDA and Christian Union.

On migration, the parties agreed to limit financial allowances for asylum seekers in the first two years of their stay, while annually admitting several hundred refugees more than before.

A new right-of-centre government, which will be announced later this month, plans to reduce corporate tax rates, but increase tax on polluters.__EuroNews

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