Up to and including 2026, the government will allocate a total of 8.7 billion euros extra for the higher influx of asylum seekers. This is evident from the Spring Memorandum that Minister Kaag has sent to the House of Representatives. Earlier today it was announced that the number of asylum seekers will rise sharply this year, probably to 70,000.
In addition, there are many other major expenses, says Kaag in her overview of expenses. For example, in the coming years the government will make more than 13.5 billion extra available for the ‘debt of honor’ to Groningen and 1.3 billion will be made available for the recovery operation in the Supplementary Affair.
It has also been decided, for example, that healthcare workers who contracted lung covid in the first corona wave and who have become incapacitated for work as a result, can receive an amount of 15,000 euros per person.
Traffic fines up 10 percent
Rising interest costs and “the far-reaching events of the past year have also caused budget setbacks”, says Kaag. “For example, the cabinet has set a price ceiling to dampen the effect of high energy prices. In addition, it supports Ukraine, which is still facing a terrible war.”
The setbacks are largely offset by windfalls, says the Minister of Finance. For example, the plan to make childcare almost free will be postponed for two years and all traffic and administrative fines will be increased by 10 percent.
Almost all departments have to hand in something. Defense is spared in this because of the war in Ukraine and the obligations towards the NATO alliance.
Due to all the large government expenditures, the budget deficit is increasing. In the years up to and including 2027, it will fluctuate around 3 percent of gross domestic product (GDP), the maximum under European fiscal rules. If policy remains unchanged, the budget deficit will increase to 3.5 percent in 2028.
PvdA: Kaag has to do homework again
The PvdA has nothing good to say about the piece. “We did not receive a Spring Memorandum today, but a Spring Puzzle”, says MP Henk Nijboer in a first reaction. He finds the piece “unreadable” and “inimitable” and misses, among other things, the 28 billion euros for the climate plans that came out earlier this week.
- Cabinet confirms significant increase in expected asylum applications: probably 70,000
- Free childcare is postponed for two years, the cabinet is making cuts for the first time in years
- Cabinet allocates 28 billion for 120 climate measures: ‘Will occasionally squeeze’
- Groningen will receive an extra 13.5 billion euros for damage, reinforcement and ‘debt of honor’