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The Netherlands. The government wants to abolish dividend tax to keep Shell

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Shell has announced its intention to move the company’s headquarters from the Netherlands to Great Britain. Accordingly, the Dutch government is considering abolishing the dividend tax for international shareholders and thus persuading the company to change its mind. The Minister of Economy wants to convince political parties to this idea.

Shell’s new headquarters

On Monday, the oil and gas giant Shell announced that it intends to move out of the Netherlands. The seat is to be moved from The Hague to London.


The Dutch government was dissatisfied with the proposal that the company’s shareholders will vote on on December 10. – I am unpleasantly surprised – Minister of Economy Stef Blok told journalists.

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– The relocation of the company’s headquarters will mean a loss of hundreds of millions of euros a year, which now go to the treasury in tax – says Jan van de Streek, a professor of tax law quoted by the daily “Trouw”.

Dividend Tax

According to the media, Minister Blok started consultations with parties in the lower house of parliament (Tweede cameras) on the abolition of the tax on dividends in order to convince the company to change its decision to change its seat.

The daily “De Telegraaf” recalls that Shell CEO Ben van Beurden indicated, both in talks with the government and with journalists, that the failure to abolish the dividend tax was the main reason for moving the headquarters to London.

“The government is now frantically convincing parliamentary factions to agree to it,” the newspaper reads. According to the media, the adoption of the government’s proposal would cost the budget nearly EUR 2 billion a year.

Shell refinery at PernisPAP / EPA / ROBIN UTRECHT

The business position of the Netherlands

“The answer is no,” Lilianne Ploumen, leader of the opposition Labor Party (PvdA), tweeted. In her opinion, this money must be used to solve housing problems and invest in health care.

The entrepreneurs association VNO NCW believes that the loss of Shell will worsen the business position of the Netherlands. The organization points out that two million people work for multinational companies in the Netherlands, earning twice the national average.

Main photo source: PAP / EPA / ROBIN UTRECHT

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