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1 November 2017

Roemer: 'Not for multinationals, but for each other'

SP leader Emile Roemer addressed Parliament today, giving a detailed critique of the new government’s policies and continuing to outline those of the SP and the left opposition. Naturally enough most of this critique concerned domestic policies, but Roemer also touched upon a number of matters with an international dimension.

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1 November 2017

Other choices

SP leader Emile Roemer outlines the left opposition’s alternatives to the new government’s policies.

Politics is a matter of making choices. The SP’s choices are clear. We choose people. Cooperation, in place of everyone for his- or herself. For a country in which the government is at your side, with health care which doesn’t require you to pay a personal contribution, for higher wages and affordable housing.

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27 October 2017

Priority for human rights over business interests still on the cards

The SP is delighted that the process leading to a binding UN treaty on human rights and corporations has taken a further major step forward. This is despite repeated European Union attempts to frustrate progress, and despite also a remarkable lack of support on the part of the Netherlands.

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24 October 2017

For Karim – and many others

Foto: SP

Can we imagine it? That during a war in our neighbouring countries more than six million Germans or Belgians would be admitted? It’s an enormous number, but one comparable to what Lebanon is doing in the here and now. With four million inhabitants, the country has taken in one-and-a-half million refugees. And it is coming apart at the seams.

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23 October 2017

A binding human rights treaty

It has been known for some time that expected profits and economic growth figures are not the only way to happiness for all. Next week we will have the chance to make progress towards a UN treaty which will make it obligatory for corporations to respect human rights. As things stand European governments do not seem inclined to play a glittering role in this. That’s a pity, because a great deal is at stake.

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21 October 2017

Fraud is in KPMG’s genes, a plea for a boycott in St. Maarten’s reconstruction

Fraud and corruption, it seems to be in the genes of KPMG. Even the construction of their own headquarters in Amstelveen was a fraudulent affair, one that involved millions of euros. KPMG offers its clients customised work. That can be messing with the books, such as with the Vestia housing corporation, or misleading numbers at the now bankrupt, Imtech; Foreign bribes (Ballast Nedam) and the payment of bribes (SBM Offshore) or large-scale fraud (as in Weyl meat processor).

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16 October 2017

De Jong disappointed by European Parliament’s position on detached workers

The European Parliament voted today on the report by PvdA (Dutch Labour Party) MEP Agnes Jongerius on the reform of the detached workers directive. Describing himself as “disappointed”, SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong said “I value enormously  the efforts made by  Agnes Jongerius and know that she fought hard to get a good result, but I also see missed opportunities. Worst of all is the fact that equal pay for equal work will come in only after two years in which a worker is posted abroad by his or her firm, while the average length of such ‘detachment’ is only four months. This is disappointing. I also see it as bad that the possibility exists to draw up separate rules for lorry drivers, which doesn’t bode well.”

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16 October 2017

Kox report on European convention system receives near-unanimous backing at Council of Europe

Today in Strasbourg, after two years of preparation, working visits, round table discussions and of going through a great deal of information, SP Senate leader Tiny Kox saw his report on ‘Defending the acquis of the Council of Europe: preserving 65 years of successful intergovernmental co-operation’ adopted by what was close to being a unanimous vote. “In my report I argue for the effective protection and sustainable development of the convention system on which the Council of Europe is based,” Senator Kox, who also heads the United Left Group in the Parliamentary Assembly  of the Council of Europe (PACE), explained. “In these conventions, which are embodied in international treaties, the human and social rights of all 835 million inhabitants of forty-seven member states are enumerated and guaranteed.”

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12 October 2017

Leijten: “Zambia treaty is theft through taxation dressed up as something new”

“Depriving a country of its natural resources for the sake of grabbing a few cents,” was how SP Member of Parliament Leijten described her fellow MPs’ vote to adopt the taxation treaty with Zambia.

The Secretary of State talks in terms of the modernisation of the treaty, but it’s really old-fashioned sucking dry of a country which doesn’t have much to start with,” says Leijten. “Multinationals will soon be able, as soon as they’ve extracted any kind of raw materials, simply to declare their profits in the Netherlands and thus avoid having to pay almost any tax at all. I call that shameless.”

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