09:23 GMT +322 October 2019
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    The shoes of Dutch Vice Prime Minister Hugo de Jonge, second right, stand out as he poses with King Willem-Alexander, center, and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, second left, and other ministers for the official photo of the new Dutch government on the steps of Royal Palace Noordeinde in The Hague, Netherlands, Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017.

    A Nightmare on Dutch Street: Netherlands Prepares for Worst-Case Brexit Scenario

    © AP Photo / Peter Dejong
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    Dutch Parliamentary report has concluded a nightmare Brexit scenario of chaos together with no UK-EU trade agreement is something the financially vulnerable country must prepare for.

    The Netherlands' Parliament was told November 16 in a report by its Committee for European Affairs that it will bear the brunt of a worst-case scenario in which a politically paralyzed United Kingdom leaves the European Union without a post-Brexit trade agreement and that even a hard Brexit which is well-implemented would be a more preferable outcome.

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    The negative impacts of merely a 'soft' Brexit are predicted to have a more acute effect on the Dutch economy than the average for other EU member-states, in large part due to the closeness of the two countries' financial sectors. The UK is the Netherlands' closest trading partner after Germany, to which it exported US$23 billion (€20 billion) in goods and services in 2015.

    The report outlined recommendations that the Dutch Parliament push more strongly for the rights of its citizens in Britain to be protected and that it work to preserve economic relations with the UK.

    Amerstdam served as London's predecessor at the hub of the European financial sector.

    Some of the largest banks operating in the UK are Dutch, including ING, Rabobank and ABN Amro and have been trying to predict the likely effects of Brexit on the UK and the Netherlands.

    An October study by the Dutch bank Rabobank concluded that a hard Brexit would shave 18 percent off UK GDP growth up to 2030, equivalent to US$400 billion with the Dutch economy losing 3.25 percent to 4.25 percent of GDP growth.

    Britain is scheduled to exit the EU on March 29 2019, two years after invoking Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, declaring its intention to leave. There are just over 16 months remaining for the two sides to negotiate the terms of separation with observers particularly in the business communities on both sides becoming increasingly anxious at what they consider a lack of progress in the talks so far.

    EU anxieties have been particularly high since the inconclusive British general election in June which severely weakened Prime Minister Theresa May's authority and has since seen several Conservative figures vying to replace her at the head of a coalition government vulnerable to sudden collapse.


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