​Historical Dutch elections of March 2017: 150 seats and more than 81 political parties

The next national elections in the Netherlands, on 15th March 2017, will be historical; never more political parties have been registered at the electoral council. In the next months 81 political parties are going to compete for the 150 seats of the Lower House. However the actual number of the registered political parties will not be known until the registration deadline is passed by the end of January. For registration interested political parties have to provide a candidate list and parties that are currently not in the parliament have to pay an amount of 12.500 Euro as deposit. Political Parties require 0.75% of the elected seat threshold to get this deposit back.

The Dutch political sis based on a constitutional monarchy and a parliamentary democracy with two Houses. In the elections of March 2017 Dutch will vote directly for 150 representatives within a system of Proportional Representation. The current campaign themes are focused on the issues of refugee crisis, racism, discrimination, Islam and the European Union.

Gender Concerns International and Election 15 March in the Netherlands

Being an organization that facilitates election observation from gender perspective through its GEOM program, internationally, Gender Concerns International is genuinely interested to observe upcoming elections. Gender disparity seems to be a norm in the Dutch politics where currently 37 percent of representatives of the Lower House are women following a decrease of the elections of 2012. What Gender Concerns is supporting the work of Gender Observing Election Missions (GEOM), and therefore it will closely follow the Dutch elections of 15th March 2017.