The Rutte IV Cabinet, Third Installment

I collected some interesting info, and the issues du jour. The next Dutch government, a four party coalition, will be sworn in January 10th.

The Minister of Climate and Energy: He was born in 1987, they call him the Climate Nag, or the Climate Pusher and he wears the title with pride. The coalition partners agreed to invest billions in the fight against climate change, and to reform housing and social policy. They announced a 35 billion-euro fund to help cover the country’s transition to carbon neutrality by 2050 at the latest, and reducing CO2 emissions by 55 percent by 2030. The coalition partners also pledged to construct two new nuclear power plants, as a source of alternative energy. Natural gas extraction, however, will be phased out as soon as possible, and no further extractions will be permitted in many areas.

This is important that the Netherlands opted to rely on nuclear energy into the future.

The Minister of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality: He was born in 1962 and comes from a blue-collar family, his grandfather and father were bakers, and when he sold his bakery chain, he got into politics. He aims at getting farmers involved in a necessary sustainability drive. A 25 billion-euro fund will be made available until 2035 in order to aid the farming industry in its efforts to transition to circular agriculture.

The Minister of Economic Affairs: A woman, born 1964, is a lawyer by profession, and a past financial advisor and director in healthcare.  There are many lawyers among the newly elected Dutch Ministers.

The Minister of Nature & Nitrogen: She is a woman, born in 1973. She will lead the new ministry in one of the cabinet’s top priorities, she knows a lot about construction in the public sector, and her success will mean a lot to climate change.

The Minister of Social Affairs and Employment: A woman, a former minister with lots of business experience. She studied Applied Physics in Delft, and came into her political career from the insurance business. She is the member of a political family. Her goal is to raise the minimum wages, and introduce free child care covering up to 95% of the cost, with 100% coverage as the goal, in the future.

Sounds great.

The Minister for Poverty Policy, Participation and Pensions: She was born in 1977, she is a political talent and a very influential policy maker. She will tackle the poverty that plagues 600,000 Dutch people every day. Known as a pragmatist, she spearheads the CU, the Christen Unie party.

Please note, a minister assigned to fight poverty.

The Minister of Health, Welfare and Sport: He was born in 1959, and the heavy corona issue will soon rest on his shoulders. He set up the National Coordination Center in the past two years, for patient distribution, designed to manage ICU beds in the Netherlands. He became one of the best known faces in the fight against the pandemic. He will spend much more on health, and attempt to lower prices of medicines, focus funds on highly complex care/treatments, in a selection of locations across Netherlands, increase intensive care, and be better prepared for pandemics. Also improve pre-natal care, impose a sugar tax and ELIMINATE the VAT on fruits and veggies. Increase the tax on tobacco, and its products.

The Minister for Long-Term Care: She is a woman, politically inexperienced because she has been working in healthcare for 40 years, but she profiled herself during the corona crisis as the patron of the elderly and believes she can improve care with a better healthcare vision, more hands, more buildings, and more innovations.

I know more now about the Dutch government plan that I know about Aruba’s! Ours is hardly ever discussed.

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January 10, 2022
Rona Coster