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Dutch firms agree to create 3,500 jobs for refugees in two years

Dutch firms agree to create 3,500 jobs for refugees in two years

Fifteen large Dutch employers, including Shell, ING, Philips and construction company Dura Vermeer have agreed to create 3,500 permanent jobs for refugees in the Netherlands and abroad over the next two years, the Financieele Dagblad said on Tuesday. In addition, the firms are starting a string of initiatives to help a further 10,000 refugees improve their prospects to get a job, start their own companies and improve living conditions in refugee camps, the paper said. ‘This is the moral agenda of big business, and is separate from politics,’ former Unilever chief executive Paul Polman said. Polman is one of the driving forces behind the Dutch Business Summit on Refugees, the paper said. Every day 44,000 more people join the global flow of refugees, Polman said. ‘You and I could have been born in Syria. Don’t forget that,’ he said in the interview. ‘I am here because the Dutch government paid for my education.’ The Dutch Summit on Refugees was organised by Tent Partnership for Refugees, an initiative launched by Hamadi Ulukaya, chief executive of the biggest producer of Greek yoghurt in the US and the son of a Kurdish shepherd. Some 30% of his employees are refugees.