May 21, 2022

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Kaag on sanctions against Russia: Without money, there is no war machine

Kaag on sanctions against Russia: Without money, there is no war machine

Without money there is no war machine. Finance Minister Kaag sees this as the main objective of the package to tackle Russia’s finances. The European Union, the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom have become yesterday Approval of the expulsion of a number of Russian banks from the international payment system SWIFT and the freezing of assets of the Central Bank of Russia.

Kaag thinks the Russians may be able to hold out for a while. “But anything you can do to slow it down or make it impossible, you have to do now,” she says.

The Finance Minister sees the closing of Russian banks from Swift as an important step in making it “difficult, if not impossible, for Russians to move in payments”. The Cabinet hopes that the EU will eventually agree to separate all Russian banks from Swift.

loss of collective well-being

According to Kaag, it is inevitable that the economy of the Netherlands and other European countries will also be affected by sanctions or possible Russian countermeasures. But she believes that “the Dutch and the rest of Europe really feel it is about something much bigger: peace, security and democracy.”

She talks about a “mass loss of wealth”. The government would like to see how this can be “silenced, especially for people who can’t really make ends meet”. But it does not yet have any concrete measures for this.

Extensive investment

The developments in Ukraine are also reviving the debate in the Netherlands about whether the defense budget should not be increased dramatically. In the alliance agreement it was agreed to allocate an additional 3 billion euros for defense.

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German Chancellor Schulze made Today He even announced that he wants to allocate an additional 100 billion euros to modernize the army. When asked if more is needed in the Netherlands, Kaag replied that the alliance is already investing “extensively” in defence.

But she also says it is a very important discussion: “This is a turning point in European history. When it matters, we must be able to act and this requires large-scale investments. Security has no price for a democratic legal system.”

Tomorrow the House of Representatives will discuss developments in Ukraine.