Amsterdam. – The Dutch government is said to be planning to apologise for its historic role in slave trade and set up a fund for projects that aim to raise awareness about the legacy of slavery.
The fund will be announced after the nation officially apologises for its role in slavery by the end of this year or the beginning of next year, according to people familiar with the matter. It may be as big as e200 million (US$204 million), the people said, speaking on condition of anonymity. .
The prime minister’s office declined to comment. Last year, the mayor of Amsterdam formally apologised for the city’s role in slavery. State-run lender ABN Amro Bank NV and the Dutch Central Bank followed suit this year.
European Central Bank Governing Council member Klaas Knot, who is also president of the bank, addressed his apology to the descendants of enslaved people and set up a fund to finance projects worth e5 million (R87 million) over the next 10 years in the Netherlands, Suriname and the Caribbean.
This week, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte is visiting Suriname where he will discuss the history of slavery in the country.
Rutte told reporters last week that “a significant moment is to be expected later this year” concerning the Dutch role in slavery.
According to South African History Online, in the year 1642, the Dutch first arrived in South Africa. Their model of colonisation was centred on slavery. – Bloomberg