MEP de Jong commented: “The Dutch presidency can be best described as big on the small and small on the big.”


“On the technical issues, the Dutch Presidency made it clear that it can build bridges. I experienced that myself as Rapporteur for the Legal Aid Directive: it was great to work together and I would like to thank those who worked hard on the Dutch side to find solutions to this issue where the views of the Council and the Parliament were initially far apart,” he said.

However, he regretted that at the political level, things were different:


“Of course, Prime Minister Rutte is not personally responsible for Brexit. This was and is a British issue. However, he can be held responsible for his reaction to the outcome of the referendum. He declared that Europe needs to have a deeper and stronger market.”

“This fixation with the market means that we are all in competition with each other. Profit for one person will mean loss for another. People will have to live for years in poverty.”


“This is the trademark of globalisation based on market forces and this is what makes people anxious and angry. The fixation with the market plays people against each other. They are anxious about their lives. They are worried about the future of their societies.



Addressing the Dutch Prime Minister, he concluded: “Mark, you were small on the big issues and you were stuck with your market fixation. What we need is a broader perspective, so that people feel protected if they need care, or if they want to get a good education. Brussels should give people back the space to build a better future together. We have had enough of the market.”



GUE/NGL Press Contact:

Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20

European United Left / Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL)

European Parliamentary Group


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