Puppet of the multinationals

16 June 2018

Puppet of the multinationals

Foto: SP

Who actually runs our country? It turns out that since 2005, using a tax haven, Shell has avoided paying the tax on dividends. And as if that isn't enough, it has also emerged that the Dutch revenue service were fully aware of this.

Prime Minister Mark Rutte has therefore got some explaining to do. Last week in the Dutch Parliament I asked in whose interests this government actually governs, those of the people or those of the multinationals. What turned out was that the only 'scientific' source for the abolition of the tax on dividends, which will cost our country €1.6 per year, was Shell itself.

The truth turned out for Rutte, time after time, to be optional. First of all there were no documents involving Shell, then he admitted that these documents did exist. Then again, first of all no-one remembered the documents, then they did. From the documents that it turned out after all did exist, it could be seen that it was Shell for whom the dividend tax had to be abolished.

In today's national daily, Trouw, it was revealed that Shell has paid hardy anything in dividend tax for thirteen years and that the Dutch revenue service was fully aware of this. I find that unbelievable. Last year personal charges for medical care were increased, rents went up and wages lagged behind, all of which was a direct consequence of the harsh spending cuts imposed by Rutte's previous government. At the same time, as we now know, secret tax deals were being agreed with Shell, deals which cost us some €7 billion per annum.

Enough is enough. Time and again it appears that the Big Cheeses in The Hague prioritise the interests of the richest 10%. Their wealth and power is protected, but there is also a Netherlands for the remaining 90%. From us ever more is demanded, while we get ever less in return.

We, the people of the country, should rule the Netherlands, and not Shell. It is not the interests of the multinationals which should be served, but those of the people. This sort of shady, stinking deal must be immediately banned. And as for Shell, they should pay back the €7 billion, down to the last cent.

Lilian Marijnissen

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