Counter-budget from the left: more money for care and lower rents

Opposition parties GroenLinks, SP and PvdA want to spend billions of euros more on higher salaries in the healthcare sector and lower rents. In a joint counter-budget, they propose to invest an extra EUR 9.4 billion. In order to pay for these plans, they mainly want to increase taxes for companies and wealthy citizens.

Today, the General Political Considerations begin in the Lower House. The House will debate with Prime Minister Rutte about the Millions Memorandum, the national budget that was presented yesterday on Budget Day. It is customary for opposition parties to submit a counter-budget at that time.

Lower rents

The left-wing opposition wants to freeze the healthcare premium, structurally increase salaries in the healthcare sector and reduce the pressure of work. This will cost a total of EUR 4.5 billion. We also need extra money for culture and development cooperation. In addition, the landlord levy paid by corporations must be reduced by EUR 1.6 billion. In the opinion of the three parties, this money must be converted into lower rents, new construction and making housing more sustainable.

In addition, they want to spend an extra EUR 2.3 billion on measures to help people in the corona crisis. This concerns the continued payment of wages and the abolition of the partner test, as a result of which self-employed people with an earning partner are not eligible for income support.

Why are the parties submitting this counter-budget?

GroenLinks, SP and PvdA mainly want to make it clear that other choices are also possible than those of the Cabinet. The cabinet chooses to give billions to the big business sector. That money will not go to lower rents, not to care wages and not to tackling climate change, says GreenLeft leader Jesse Klaver.

The most important thing is that we help people through the crisis, that they stay in work, says Dutch Labour Party leader Lodewijk Asscher. That we give care workers more appreciation and ensure that homes are built

In order to generate more income, the left-wing parties want to raise the highest rate of profit tax from 25% to 30%. That‘s possible, says SP leader Lilian Marijnissen. In my life alone, profit tax has been halved

Substantial profits

The three of them realise that it is precisely because of the corona crisis that many companies are on the brink of collapse, but they still think it is a good time to ask for something extra from industry. Marijnissen: Many companies are struggling, but at the same time there are also companies that make substantial profits during corona. It’s about profit tax, you only pay it if you make a profit

In addition, Marijnissen, Klaver and Asscher want to increase the tax on capital above 100,000 euros. Anyone with more than 150,000 euros in assets will then be subject to a rate of 60%.