It is not only the southern EU countries that must tackle their “economic excesses” such as high sovereign debt. The Dutch and German budget surpluses are equally excessive and need to be addressed.

This is what IMF top executive Christine Lagarde said in Luxembourg after her presentation to the Eurogroup of the annual report from the UN organization on the euro zone. According to Lagarde, countries that are more than weak should, like the Netherlands, invest more “in high quality.”

The Netherlands recorded a surplus on the state budget of 11.3 billion euros last year, or 1.5 percent of gross domestic product (GDP). In Germany, the surplus is even 3 percent.

The European Commission also criticizes the Dutch budget surplus. In February, she encouraged The Hague to invest more in not only tangible things, but also, for example, in intellectual property and research and development.

Without naming Italy by name, Lagarde warned that “the predominantly southern EU countries with their high sovereign debt must find the right budget path. That requires political courage. But the instruments for that exist. “

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