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Dutch deficit on path to breach European rules in 2013 and 2014, budget office says

AMSTERDAM – Dutch government deficit spending is set to break European limits in both 2013 and 2014, a development that may compel Finance Minister Jeroen Dijsselbloem to go to opposition parties to seek approval for new tax hikes or spending cuts.

The Central Planning Bureau forecast released Thursday estimates that the country’s deficit will amount to 3.4 per cent of annual gross domestic product this year, and 3.3 per cent in 2014.

The rules governing the euro currency allow a maximum deficit of 3 per cent.

Dijsselbloem, who also chairs meetings of the 17 euro finance ministers, has been vocal in demanding other countries obey the budget rules.

The centrist Dutch governing coalition lacks a majority in the Senate and needs opposition help passing laws.