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Dutch News
Politicians pleased with Nobel peace prize for Europe, except Wilders 10/14/2012
Politicians pleased with Nobel peace prize for Europe, except Wilders
Friday 12 October 2012

The decision to award the Nobel Peace Prize to the European Union is ''great recognition of the major historical role the European Union has played in peace, security and democracy, prime minister Mark Rutte said on Friday.
Labour leader Diederik Samsom, currently in talks with Rutte on forming a new coalition government, said the award is ''a great honour''.
However, the award has implications for this generation of politicians, he said. ''They know what is at stake''.
Foreign minister Uri Rosenthal emphasised the role of the EU in guaranteeing peace, while the defence minister said the decision is a ''boost'' for the EU.
However, D66 leader Alexander Pechtold, one of the most pro-European campaigners in parliament, said he felt the prize has more impact if it is awarded to a single person.
And Geert Wilders, leader of the anti-European PVV, said the prize had been given to the EU because of all the problems facing the alliance. ''What next? An Oscar for [EU president Herman] van Rompuy,'' Wilders said.

Big firms consider leaving the Netherlands, says KPMG report
Friday 12 October 2012

Some of the Netherlands'' biggest companies are considering leaving the country because of the worsening climate for entrepreneurs, according to a new report by consultants group KPMG.
BNR radio quotes the report as saying the Netherlands'' competitive position is under pressure as companies become more international and less tied to their country of origin.
''The results are noteworthy because the Netherlands has always been considered an attractive home base for large international firms,'' KPMG Nederland chairman Jurgen van Breukelen told the broadcaster.
Big firms now look at how close they are to their most important markets. ''And in a small country like the Netherlands, you are less well positioned,'' Van Breukelen said.
In order to make sure the country remains attractive, the government should focus on ensuring an attractive fiscal climate for international firms, that the infrastructure is good and education is properly focused, Van Breukelen said.

Telecom firms plan to make stolen mobile phones unusable
Friday 12 October 2012

Telecom firms and the justice ministry have reached agreement on making mobile phones totally unusable if they are reported stolen, in an effort to cut down phone-related mugging.
Currently, phone firms only block sim cards when thefts are reported and phones can be started up again if the thief uses a new card. According to RTL news, phones are stolen in 60% of muggings.
Phone firms will need the unique serial number of the mobile phone in order to stop it working again, Nos says.
KPN, Vodafone and T-Mobile have signed up to the agreement. Belgium, Germany and Britain have already introduced blocks on stolen phones.

Oil giant Shell in court in The Hague over Nigerian pollution
Thursday 11 October 2012

A unique court case begins in The Hague on Thursday as oil giant Shell is taken to court by four Nigerian farmers over environmental damage to their village.
The four are supported by environmental group Milieudefensie and the case is the first time a Dutch company has been taken to court in the Netherlands for causing damage in a foreign country.
The farmers are demanding Shell clean up oil pollution in their villages as well as damages. They argue their land has become polluted, fish are dying and drinking water is no longer fit for human consumption.
Key issues
According to Nos television, the case hinges on two key issues: is Shell itself responsible for damage caused by Shell Nigeria, and is Shell doing enough to prevent further spillages?
The case has taken four years to come to court. Shell had argued the case should not be heard in the Netherlands because the country has no jurisdiction over Shell Nigeria (SPDC) but was overruled.
''This is the first time Shell will face a Dutch judge,'' Milieudefensie spokesman Geert Ritsema told the Nos. ''That is important because there have been thousands of court cases in Nigeria without the desired result.''
Shell argues 75% of the oil leaks in Nigeria are caused by sabotage and oil thieves and will try to prove this is the case in the three villages at the centre of today''s court case, the Nos said.

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