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Political parties respond to Eurozone deal

November 3, 2011

By Christiaan Frankin
Amsterdam – Response from Dutch politicians to Thursday’s Eurozone leaders’ agreement on a strategy to counter the debt crisis has been divided.

The deal includes a 50% cutoff of Greek debt held by private banks, and the Euro’s bailout fund, the European Financial Stability Facility has been boosted to over a trillion Euros. Furthermore, European banks will be required to be recapitalized by about 106 billion euros.

House of Representatives member Mark Harbers from the VVD party lauded the agreement, praising Prime Minister Mark Rutte for negotiating “a number of crucial points for the Netherlands.”

The CDA is optimistic about the agreement, with Elly Blanksma noting that “Europe has leapt forwards tonight.” She was happy with the commitment made to curbing public deficit in member states, especially “Italy and Spain have made convincing promises to get their economies back on track.”

GroenLinks leader Jolande Sap was also positive, yet more cautious, stating, “an escalation of the Euro crisis has been prevented” but “the fire has not been extinguished completely yet.”

D66 minister Woute Koolmees was said to be content with the agreements, but is still unsure about the execution of the plan, saying that “Brussels has made agreements on all the important points, but […] the devil is in the details.”

The ChristenUnie party’s Arie Slob was pleased with the debt write-off, but criticized the timeframe of the agreement, arguing, “the effect is much less significant because of the long wait.” She further expressed doubts over whether the current package will prove to be a long-term solution to Europe’s problems.

SP House of Representatives member Ewout Irrganger has expressed his disdain for the results of the negotiations, stating that “we do not support this agreement, it is not a solution to the Greek problem.” The main reason for this lack of confidence is the risk posed to the Netherlands by the bailout fund due to Italy’s insecure finances.

Though the PVV agrees with the VVD that a big step was made, “it was in the wrong direction,” said PVV leader Geert Wilders. He condemned the support for ‘problem countries” who should take care of themselves, or otherwise abandon the Euro.

Contrasting to the disparity caused by the initial agreement, Greece’s choice to hold a referendum over the Austerity measures that would accompany the bailout has left a vast majority of the House of Representatives frustrated and wondering if Greece even wants to be rescued.

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