July 12, 2020

The Dutch Finance Minister acknowledges that he lacked empathy but maintains his position on Eurobonds


In an interview on Dutch RTL television, Hoekstra has guaranteed that his country wants to “help” but has admitted that the messages he recently released about the Dutch position were not “sufficiently empathetic” and were expressed in such a way that “they provoked resistance”.

The Dutch Finance Minister has pointed out, for example, that his government’s rejection of a European mutual debt instrument has been made clear, but the same is not the case with the desire to show solidarity. “I have not given my message with enough empathy,” he said, to later affirm that they are in favor of “solidarity” but also of seeking a “reasonable and sensible” path.

Hoekstra thus acknowledges that he was wrong to share a position that, for example, the Prime Minister of Portugal, António Costa, called “disgusting”. However, the Dutchman has made it clear that his country’s government, led by Mark Rutte, maintains its position on Eurobonds.

Asked about this, Hoekstra has argued that the possibility of issuing joint debt “is simply not smart” because it is not the right solution and also puts the eurozone at “greater risk” than it is today.

“About coronabonds, eurobonds, or whatever they are called, it is simply not smart. It is a solution to a problem that does not exist and in the end it puts the eurozone at a greater risk than the current one. Therefore it is not the right thing to do. do it, “he emphasized.

The Netherlands leads with Germany the group of countries that oppose this measure that ask to promote others such as Spain, Italy or France. In fact, Hoekstra’s comments were added on Tuesday by the German Finance Minister, Olaf Scholz, who, like his Dutch colleague, prefers to use the financing available through the European bailout fund (ESM).

“I am firmly convinced that we must now see if funds can be mobilized in the budget of the European Union to help those countries that, in particular, have great financial needs to provide healthcare to their citizens or to stabilize their economies,” expressed this Tuesday at a conference collected by ‘DPA’.

The Eurogroup will hold a new videoconference next Tuesday, April 7, in which they must agree on a coordinated fiscal response to the Covid-19 pandemic, as they were commissioned by the heads of state and government at the summit last week .

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