February 5th, 2013 • The Dutch national Parliament adopted two proposals from the SP calling on the government to make every effort to push through strict limits on bakers’ bonuses within the European Union. Parliament supported both of SP Member Arnold Merkies’s plans to demand European agreements to place severe limits on bonuses and, in the case of banks in receipt of state bail-outs, ban them completely.
In the proposal from Merkies bonuses throughout the EU would be restricted to 20% of annual salary. This norm, previously proposed at the domestic level by the SP and the Labour Party, found its way last year into the coalition agreement which established the new Liberal-Labour coalition government. The adoption of this second proposal means that the government will be requested to make every effort to achieve a total ban on the payment of bonuses and dividends where state aid has been paid to banks. ‘Too often you see bankers making off with hefty bonuses while the firms for which they work are ailing,’ says Merkies. ‘By adopting these proposals Parliament is sending a clear signal that this practice should be consigned to the past.’