The diversion of funds from development aid to asylum reception is of concern to parliament

The diversion of funds from development aid to asylum reception is of concern to parliament
Emergency aid for the people of Somalia due to the ongoing drought

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In the House of Representatives, government parties D66 and ChristenUnie criticize the new government’s plan to spend around 3.4 billion euros in development funds on asylum reception in the Netherlands in the coming years.

Opposition parties PvdA and GroenLinks call the proposal unacceptable and talk of “emptying out” the poverty reduction budget in the world’s poorest countries. “The Netherlands will become the largest recipient of its own development funds,” notes PvdA Member of Parliament Joris Thijsen. “This is not possible in a rich country like the Netherlands.

Critics fear that existing aid programs in developing countries could be jeopardized if the Netherlands cut off the tap. “We have to make sure we have enough money left to do what we need to do in the Netherlands,” says Alexander Hammelborg, a D66 MP. He wants Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Minister Lesje Schreinmacher to come up with a solution.

Branch organization of more than 100 development organizations in the Netherlands, Bartosfears of jeopardizing aid to the world’s poorest people.

Close the hole

Two weeks ago, it appeared in the Spring Memorandum that the Cabinet wanted to receive 0.5 billion euros from the Development Cooperation Fund this year for asylum seekers who had just arrived in the Netherlands. This amount will increase to 1.1 billion euros annually in the coming years. The government is short of money due to the increasing number of asylum seekers and wants to fill the gap in the budget in this way.

By the way, it has been happening for years in the Netherlands that the shortage of asylum reception is being solved with development funds. But so far it has not been about such high amounts.


The question is whether Minister Schrenemacher will accept the House’s request to amend the plans. She describes the procedures as painful, but supports them. Schreinemacher believes that the increased costs of asylum reception must also be paid for. You will see the development projects that will be cancelled.

It is not yet clear whether the ruling parties D66 and CU will eventually accept this approach.

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