Attached to the world: on the anchoring and strategy of Dutch foreign policy

The WRR calls for a rethinking of Dutch foreign policy in its report Attached to the world. On the anchoring and strategy of Dutch foreign policy (Report no. 85, 2010). The nature of international relations has changed radically, so the Netherlands needs to make clear strategic choices, pursue excellence in the European arena and become a facilitator in the world of non-state actors, the WRR says in the report.

Strategic approach to foreign policy

The WRR calls for a more strategic approach to foreign policy and outlines a deliberation framework that can be used to formulate clear choices for foreign policy. Those choices should be aimed at raising the Netherlands’ profile, visibility and influence. With the new approach, the general international strategy would be a matter for the entire cabinet, and hence the responsibility of the Minister of General and European Affairs.

The EU is the dominant arena for foreign policy

The European Union is and will remain the predominant arena for international cooperation for the Netherlands. Anyone wishing to achieve their goals in foreign policy must exert influence in this arena and must excel there if it is to achieve its national interests.