De Croo suggests, among other things, limiting unemployment to 2 years in order to achieve the NATO standard Domestic

To enable Belgium to invest more in defense by 2029 and thus achieve the NATO standard, Open Vld wants to employ more people. Prime Minister, but in this case especially party leader Alexander De Croo, said this on Sunday at ‘VTM News’. He suggested limiting unemployment benefits to 2 years.

Open Vld announced on Friday that it wants to drastically accelerate investments in defense. The party believes that our country must achieve the NATO standard as early as 2029, instead of 2035. This NATO standard states that our country must invest 2 percent of GDP, gross domestic product or, say, the total size of the economy, in defense.

A very conscious choice, De Croo said on Sunday. “We have been able to live together in peace (in Europe) for three generations. I want the next generations to be able to do that too, but then we have to be better armed.”

“Be a lot more compelling”

According to De Croo, more money for defense means that “we will do a number of fewer things”. While an additional 300,000 people were helped into a job during the past legislature, the next government should put at least 400,000 to work, De Croo said. “That will require an effort and means, for example, that in unemployment you will have to be a lot more forceful to help people find a job.”

Helping more people into jobs is an act of solidarity, and that helps us to become more secure as European countries.

Prime Minister Alexander De Croo (Open Vld)

When asked whether Open Vld wanted to limit unemployment benefits over time, De Croo replied that this “seems logical for people who have been unemployed for a long time”. “That could stop after two years,” he said concretely. “Helping more people into jobs is an act of solidarity, and that helps us to become more secure as European countries,” he added.

Keeping healthcare expenditure “under control”

At the same time, De Croo wants to keep the growth of healthcare expenditure “under control”. The corona crisis required additional investments, but now the growth rate should be much lower, according to the Prime Minister, who did not provide a specific figure. “But of course you have to ensure that the quality of care remains the same.” Currently, the legal growth standard is 2 percent of GDP.

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