Coalition agreement

The government sets out in the coalition agreement what it wants to achieve in the next cabinet period: for instance a reduction in unemployment, a cleaner environment without damaging the economy, and more money for education. The coalition parties each want to implement as much as possible of their party manifestos in the coalition agreement.

Political parties wanting to make up a new cabinet first have to reach an agreement on a draft coalition agreement, negotiated by the leaders of the parliamentary groups under the leadership of one or more informateurs. This agreement is then presented for comment to the political groups representing the coalition parties in the House of Representatives. The more comments are received, the greater the chances that further negotiations will be necessary between the intended coalition partners. It may, for instance, be an issue that political groups find too few of the goals formulated in their party's manifesto included in the coalition agreement. In such a case, the formation may still fail.

Give and take

A coalition agreement is a matter of give and take, and a compromise between different party views. In the House of Representatives, the cabinet sheds some light on the agreement with the government’s policy statement.