Dutch govt to lower energy taxes amid surge in prices

THE HAGUE, NETHERLANDS (AP) – The Dutch government is planning a multi-billion euro package to help households cope with soaring energy bills, a minister said on Friday.

The Netherlands is the latest European nation to seek to deal with the effects of surging prices for electricity and gas.

The caretaker administration of Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte plans to slash taxes on energy in a move that would save the average household about EUR400 (USD463) per year, State Secretary for Economic Affairs and Climate Dilan Yesilgöz-Zegerius told reporters in The Hague.

Earlier this week, the European Union’s (EU) executive branch advised the 27 EU member countries to adopt tax cuts, state aid and other measures to help households and businesses weather the impact of high energy prices.

After months of economic instability linked to the coronavirus pandemic, the European Commission wants a rapid and joint response to mitigate the effects of the price hikes, especially for people living in poverty or on low incomes.

The Netherlands’ Prime Minister Mark Rutte arriving at the Ministry of General Affairs in The Hague, the Netherlands. PHOTO: AFP