March 18, 2014 15:51 UTC

Q & A on President Barack Obama’s visit to the Netherlands for the Nuclear Security Summit, March 24-25, 2014

WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Government leaders from 53 countries will meet in The Hague March 24-25 for the Nuclear Security Summit to discuss the next steps in securing nuclear material around the world. In addition to attending the Nuclear Security Summit, President Obama will meet Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte for bilateral discussions. The President will also visit the Museumplein district in Amsterdam, home to the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, and the Het Stedelijk Museum.

Here’s a Q & A on the longstanding relationship between the Netherlands and the United States.



What is the basis for the ties between the Netherlands and the United States?

The Dutch-US relationship began more than 400 years ago, when a Dutch ship captained by Henry Hudson landed on ground now known as New York City. Since then, the Netherlands and the United States have been joined by the values of freedom, justice and an entrepreneurial spirit. A vibrant economic force, the Netherlands is also the 3rd largest foreign investor in America and a reliable trade and investment partner to the U.S. The Royal Netherlands Embassy, Dutch Consulates General and Honorary Consuls in the U.S. promote strong bilateral relations between the United States and the Netherlands in the areas of peace and stability; international law; energy and climate; water management; international human rights; and creative industries. The Netherlands and the United States are two countries, with one spirit united by values, history and a vision of the future. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZ46GDwmLrU&list=PLD298692B1D646404



Is this the first official visit between President Obama and Prime Minister Rutte?

President Obama and Prime Minister Rutte held their first official visit in 2011, when Prime Minister Rutte visited Washington. During their meeting at the White House, President Obama stated, “Part of the reason we wanted to make this meeting happen is because we have no stronger ally than the Netherlands. They consistently punch above their weight on a whole range of issues related to global security. Prime Minister Rutte has been a strong supporter of NATO, as was his predecessor, and we've been able to work together on a whole host of issues. They've made an enormous contribution to Afghanistan; they made a very important contribution to Libya; on anti-piracy. On a whole host of issues, the Netherlands consistently is supportive of efforts for our joint security, and we're very grateful for that.”



How do the Netherlands and the United States work together on trade issues?

Like many countries, the Netherlands and the United States were affected by the economic downturn in 2008. The Netherlands supports the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership negotiations that are taking place. Both countries benefit from trade. The top destination for U.S. foreign direct investment in 2012 was the Netherlands with $645 billion. The Netherlands is the 3rd largest foreign investor in the US with $275 billion in 2012 (latest figure available). If you look at jobs, more than 680,000 jobs are supported by the economic ties between the Netherlands and the United States (latest figure available).



What does the Netherlands want to accomplish by hosting the Nuclear Security Summit?

Nuclear terrorism is a major threat to international security. The Netherlands recognizes this fact, and participated in the first two Nuclear Security Summits held in 2010 in Washington, and 2012 in South Korea. At the Dutch-organized summit, world leaders will work toward three goals to prevent nuclear terrorism. Nuclear Security Summit 2014 will build on the progress and results of the previous summits and lay the foundation for the next summit in 2016. Piet de Klerk, the chief negotiator for the summit, stated: “The aim is to compose a joint communique containing clear agreements to prevent nuclear terrorism by: reducing stockpiles of hazardous nuclear material around the world; better securing nuclear material; and intensifying international cooperation.”



Would you like to see a light-hearted list on the advice the Dutch offer President Obama on his first visit to the Netherlands? Then see our BuzzFeed list, http://www.buzzfeed.com/nlintheusa/welcome-to-the-netherlands-mr-president-giof


Follow the Nuclear Security Summit on Twitter by using @NSS2014 or #NSS2014.



Royal Netherlands Embassy
Public Diplomacy, Press and Culture Section
Ilse van Overveld
202-274-2630 or (c) 202- 413-5020
Carla Bundy
202-274-2632 or (c) 202-413-9786

Source: Royal Netherlands Embassy