Monday, 23 April 2012

Geert Wilders brings down Dutch government

The Dutch Prime Minister has resigned, triggering an election after Geert Wilders withdrew support for a €16bn EU-imposed austerity programme.

Wilders' Freedom Party isn't part of the ruling coalition but Mark Rutte's minority government relied on their support to govern.

The Dutch economy is one of the strongest in Europe and their national debt is only 65% of GDP which is about 7 and a half times smaller than the UK but their budget deficit is expected to top 4.7% which is way above the EU's one size fits all target of 3%.

It will be a few weeks to organise an election, during which time a caretaker government can inflict some EU-mandated damage as their neighbours in Belgium found out.