Parliament doubts whether security is in good hands with the PVV

The PVV “seriously” criticizes the purchase of four modern submarines from the French naval shipyard for 10 billion euros. During a parliamentary debate on Monday, MP Joeri Pool claimed that the submarines could have already been awarded to the Dutch Damen shipyards in 2019. Then Dutch shipping companies would have benefited more than now. “No one can blame the PVV for the fact that problems will arise if we do not reach an agreement with Naval,” Pool said. He wants a “firm guarantee” that Dutch companies will benefit from the order and a “100 percent guarantee” that the US Tomahawk cruise missiles will actually be delivered.

“How risk-averse do you want to be?” CDA MP Derk Boswijk sighed about criticism of the PVV. Future coalition partners VVD, NSC and BBB asked the PVV to take “responsibility” for this important decision due to the political stability of the new government. GroenLinks-PvdA even demanded that the future ruling party “fully” support the cabinet’s decision from a political, administrative and long-term point of view, to avoid problems in the new cabinet.

VVD State Secretary for Defense Christophe van der Maat considers it “incomprehensible” that the future largest government party would treat the security of the Netherlands in this way. Defense quickly needs a “prospect” that new submarines will be available. “Otherwise, there is a good chance that the navy will not have a single submarine in a few years, and that is not in the interests of Dutch security.” The Americans do not give any guarantees, he emphasizes. In fact, talks with the United States on cruise missiles have not yet begun.

Not only the PVV, but also the PEC remain critical. The SGP has tabled a motion asking the outgoing cabinet to postpone the purchase until the new cabinet, with the PVV, takes office. Van der Maat strongly advised against this motion. “I read that motion as an adjustment of the decision. I say with all my being that if it is approved, I will never implement it,” said the Secretary of State.

Responsibility of the national administration

He called on the PVV faction to think again next week. “If the PVV is in favor of postponement or cancellation, it will have an important effect. It is also about taking responsibility for the national government and a reliable government,” says Van der Maat.

The outgoing cabinet of Rutte IV had already accelerated the pace of ordering submarines, because the old Walrus ships urgently need to be replaced. The new submarines will not be available for at least ten years. According to Van der Maat, Naval offers “the best chance” of new ships being delivered on time, before old ones fail.

Naval will build the ships together with the Dutch IHC. Through IHC, the Dutch business community benefits as much as it would have from its competitor Damen, the government claims. Naval is by far the cheapest and also rates as “the best” in other requirements. The submarine’s staff are also “very satisfied” with the choice.

The other bidders, the Swedish-Dutch Saab-Damen and the German ThyssenKrupp, could not accept the order. Saab-Damen will now receive another Defense order as compensation. But the German company Thyssen has filed a summary procedure against the Dutch State. This expires at the end of this month.

Also read:

The House of Representatives became irritated with SGP MP Chris Stoffer,

wanted to debate submarines even before there was a cabinet decision

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