Until the Second World War, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had a relatively weak position within the Dutch political system. In the second half of the nineteenth century, especially in liberal and commercial circles, foreign affairs was even considered an irrelevant luxury. The First World War changed these opinions, and under the dynamic Foreign Minister H. A. van Karnebeek (1918–27), the position of the Ministry was strengthened, especially through the acquisition of the responsibility for foreign economic relations. In the 1930s, however, the status of the Foreign Ministry declined again. The liberal-minded Ministry lost its control over policy making in the field of foreign economic relations to the Ministry of Economic Affairs, a result of growing state interventionism and bilateralism in the world economy. In the 1930s, the Prime Minister, the strong-minded former Shell director H. Colijn, regularly interfered in foreign policy.


Prime Minister Foreign Policy European Integration Foreign Affair Economic Affair 
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Official reports

  1. Begroting Buitenlandse Zaken en Ontwikkelingssamenwerking 1997 (The Hague: Ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken, September 1996)Google Scholar
  2. De herrjking van het buitenlands beleid (The Hague: Ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken, September 1995)Google Scholar
  3. De onvoltooide Europese integratie, Wetenschappelijke Raad voor het Regeringsbeleid (The Hague, 1986)Google Scholar
  4. The Netherlands and the Future of the European Union (The Hague: Sdu Uitgevers, 1995)Google Scholar
  5. Stabiliteit en veiligheid in Europa: het veranderende krachtenveld voor het buitenlands beleid Wetenschappelijke Raad voor het Regeringsbeleid (The Hague: Sdu Uitgeverij, 1995)Google Scholar
  6. Startnotitie: Naar een nieuw Ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken (The Hague: Ministerie van Buitenlandse Zaken, November 1995)Google Scholar

Books and articles

  1. Van den Bos, Jan. M. M. Dutch EC policy making. A model-guided approach to coordination and negotiation (Amsterdam: Thesis, 1991)Google Scholar
  2. Van den Bos, Jan. M. M. ‘De ambtelijke coordinatie van Nederlandse EG-standpunten. Een netwerkanalyse’, in Menno Wolters (ed.) Democratic en beleid in de Europese Gemeenschap (Aplhen a/d Rijn: Samson/Tjeenk Willink, 1992) pp. 229–47Google Scholar
  3. Hellema, Duco Buitenlandse politick van Nederland (Utrecht: Het Spectrum, 1995)Google Scholar
  4. Hoetjes, Bernard S. ‘The Netherlands’, in Rometz, D. and Wessels, W. (eds) The European Union and Member States: Towards Institutional Fusion? (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1997) pp. 155–84Google Scholar
  5. Labohm, H. H. J. ‘European decision-making in the Netherlands’, in J. Kaufmann (ed.) Effective negotiation. Case studies in conference diplomacy (Dordrecht: Nijhoff, 1989)Google Scholar
  6. Labohm, H. H. J. (ed.) De waterdragers van het Nederlandse Europabeleid. Terugblik op 40 jaar DGES (Den Haag: Sdu Uitgevers, 1997)Google Scholar
  7. Moquette, F. G. ‘Van BEP tot BEB. De aanpassing van de bestuurlijke structuren aan de ontwikkelingen van de buitenlandse economische betrekkingen in Nederland sinds 1795’, Academic dissertation, Leiden, 1993Google Scholar
  8. Pijpers, Alfred ‘The Netherlands. The weakening pull of Atlanticism’, in Hill, Christopher (ed.) The Actors in Europe’s Foreign Policy (London: Routledge, 1995) pp. 247–68Google Scholar
  9. Van Schendelen, M. P. C. M. Gelijkhebben of winnen? Nederlandse belangenbehartiging in de Europese Unie (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 1995)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Soetendorp, R. B. ‘Het Europese beleid vraagt om aanpassing van nationale besluitvorming’, in Nederland in een veranderende wereld. De toekomst van het buitenlands beleid (door P. R. Baehr a.o., Assen: Van Gorcum, 1991) pp. 92–105Google Scholar
  11. Soetendorp, Ben and Hanf, Kenneth ‘The Netherlands. Growing Doubts of a Loyal Member’, in Hanf, K. and Soetendorp, B. Adapting to European Integration. Small states and European Union (London/New York: Longman, 1998) pp. 36–52Google Scholar
  12. Wels, C. B. ‘The Foreign Policy Institutions of the Dutch Republic and the Kingdom of the Netherlands 1580 to 1980’, in Wels, C. B. Aloofness and Neutrality. Studies on Dutch Foreign Relations and Policy-Making Institutions (Utrecht: HES, 1982) pp. 114–47Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Duco Hellema

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