“I’ve seen everything,” VVD negotiator Sophie Hermanns says of the European plans on Tuesday afternoon. Brussels has been looking at a further reduction in the mortgage interest discount for some time and now appears to be focusing on this under the ECRF umbrella. Wopke Hoekstra (Finance) wrote to the Chamber of Deputies on Monday that if the Netherlands wants to demand 6 billion euros in ready donations, it is likely that our country will have to reduce the discount further. He leaves it to the formation, where he himself frequently joins as CDA leader, to decide if and how Holland wants to do it.
But VVD member Hermans postpones Tuesday: “We just have our own negotiations here.” Her party has backed down several times in the past by saying it stands up to the homeowners tax advantage, only to expand it deeper and deeper into many of Rutte’s coffers. Hermans does not want to comment on the sensitive topic of the party: “I will not talk about what our commitment is, because that does not help the negotiation within it.”
CDA MEP Esther de Lange thinks those negotiations should not be so difficult. Because she expects the soup will not be “eaten hot” as it is now served. According to her, the phasing out of the tax advantage is not a requirement of the European Union. “First of all, it is up to the Netherlands itself to decide whether it wants to address the turmoil in the housing market as part of its recovery plan, and if so, what actions.”
CU, like VVD, is kept aloof from discussion. A spokesperson said he would not provide any explanation during formation and referred to the party’s election manifesto, which stated that the party wanted to eliminate interest deductions entirely in the long run, in exchange for a lower income tax.
No support for villas
D66 member Rob Jetten will reiterate his party’s position on Tuesday afternoon, which has been calling for the opponent to be phased out for some time. He has no problem with Brussels’ demands for billions. “We also ask other countries to do so,” he notes, pointing out that the Netherlands itself has insisted on this demand for reforms. It leaves open the question of how the conversation about the opponent in formation works. “We learned that the D66 and VVD are different in this regard. And you can ask the VVD how the VVD wants to handle this.”
The opponent’s plan also divides the opposition. For example, PvdA MP Henk Niebuhr spoke of “reasonable advice” from Brussels: “Follow-up is the motto”. Member of Parliament Mahir Elkaya just wants to reduce the discount for homeowners with real estate debts of more than 350 thousand euros: “There is no subsidy for villas, but a helping hand for people who want to buy their own homes.”
MP Edgar Mulder of the PVV considers it unacceptable for the Netherlands to transfer more to Brussels for the recovery fund than it receives in donations: „Count your loss. And then we also have to say thank you and take action that puts the Dutch in more trouble.” However, his request for a discussion did not get a majority.
The Socialist Party member also threw a hard time European participation. “It is strange, however, that the centrist parties transferred this kind of power to Brussels.” JA21 MP Nikki Beau-Veroy thinks so too: “The government is getting more and more greedy. To make matters worse, Brussels wants to go one step further. Hands off the mortgage interest deduction.”
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