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27 Jun 2017

Enquiry into waste of money in EU ‘good first step’, says Leijten

Thanks to two SP proposals which won the backing of Parliament, an enquiry is to be launched into the cost to the Dutch taxpayer of financial transfers to the European Union. SP Member of Parliament Renske Leijten is pleased that there will at last be a measure of clarity on the matter. “Every year billions of euros are pumped around the European Union,” Leijten explains. “Member states must first transfer moneys to Brussels before doing their best to get some of it returned to them. Anyone with an ounce of sense can see that this system is time-consuming and expensive. It’s excellent that there will now be an enquiry into just how much money is involved. Then we can put an immediate stop to this wastefulness.”

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25 Jun 2017

50,000-strong demo demands closure of Tihange nuclear power station

Foto: SP

On Sunday, tens of thousands of people formed a human chain between the German city of Aachen, the Dutch city of Maastricht, Belgium’s Liège and the nuclear power station at Tihange. They were protesting against the failure to close the power station, and the SP was well represented amongst them.

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23 Jun 2017

Trade treaty with Japan a threat to democracy and a sustainable economy

The trade treaty currently being negotiated between the European Commission and Japan (JEFTA) will allow corporations to take governments to court if they introduce measures to protect people and the environment. This can be seen in documents from the talks made public this evening by Greenpeace. The proposed treaty, in contrast to earlier commitments, contains no more than a few ineffectively mild agreements to promote sustainability.

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21 Jun 2017

Netherlands against creation of European Finance Minister

On an initiative from the SP, the Netherlands will be actively resisting the proposal for a European Finance Minister. Both French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel have already embrace this proposal. Commenting on this, SP Member of Parliament Renske Leijten said: ‘The European Commission wants to see the eurozone even more tightly under their control and have recently launched plans for a European Minister of Finance and for the EU to have its own budget. If it were up to the Netherlands, we’d call a halt to financial integration right now.’

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21 Jun 2017

Capital versus the Climate

Every attempt to combat climate change runs up against a veto from capitalist interests. This requires us to imagine a better tomorrow, a future in which we fight for a world in which humanity and the environment, not capital accumulation, stand at the centre.

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15 Jun 2017

SP urges AirBnB law

Short-term letting of accommodation to tourists via AirBnB or Wimdu has become big business. Increasingly, cities across the world are taking measures intended to restrict online platforms of this kind. The SP wants to see similar laws introduced in the Netherlands. “There is nothing wrong with temporarily letting out your house or a room, but AirBnB takes it too far, in particular in Amsterdam,” says SP Member of Parliament Sandra Beckerman. “We have to ensure that whole streets don’t end up consisting entirely of AirBnB. That’s what will happen if we do nothing. That’s what I want to prevent. What’s needed are clear rules so that AirBnB goes back to being fun.”

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15 Jun 2017

Buying and selling services on the internet can be handy, but it's also dangerous

The internet is used increasingly to offer or obtain services. That seems handy, but it carries risks. Today the European Parliament called on the Commission to regulate this new market. SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong explains: “Internet platforms are handy, because you can, for instance, book a cab or find someone to decorate your house. Uber and Airbnb are well-known examples. But when they break the rules which protect consumers or small service providers against abuses, these platforms are also dangerous. The European Parliament is therefore right to call for rules which offer such protection.”

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14 Jun 2017

Parliament supports SP proposals on tackling unfair completion in Europe

Thanks to four proposals from the SP and the Labour Party, representatives of the Dutch government will be attempting in Brussels to get the new Posted Workers Directive tightened up. The Posted Workers Directive concerns employees who are sent by their firms to work temporarily in another member state, and the aim of tightening up the measure would be to improve their conditions. SP Member of Parliament Jasper van Dijk explains that this isn’t good news for foreign workers only, but for Dutch workers too, for example truck drivers. “If workers from the Netherlands and from abroad are no longer played off against each other because of unequal working conditions,” he says, “unfair competition will be reduced.”

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7 Jun 2017

European Commission must react quickly to Council of Europe corruption report

Council of Europe anti-corruption network GRECO today presented the results of the fourth evaluation round in its annual report for 2016. What’s striking about this is the criticism of the European Commission’s lax attitude. Commenting on the report, SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong said that “for the umpteenth time the Council of Europe” – not an EU body, but an older and broader inter-governmental organisation concerned largely with human rights and related issues – “calls on the Commission to at last do something about these evaluations. It’s depressing that in regard to such matters no progress has been made. The special contribution from European Ombudsman Emily O´Reilly does in one sense fill this gap, but at the same time has pointed out that the EU institutions’ policies on integrity still leave a lot to be desired. It’s unbelievable that the Commission doesn’t take advantage of GRECO and learn from the experiences of national governments. I’m calling on the Commissioner responsible, the Dutch vice-president Frans Timmermans, to shake the proffered hand of the Council of Europe and cooperate actively around GRECO’s evaluations.”

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Using the menu in the left-bar, you can get to know the SP, its history, activities, representatives and publications. You’ll also find a selection of SP news and the weekly blog by MEP Dennis de Jong.