Finance Project Manager from France


My name is Cyril, I am 34 and I am French.

In France, my wife used to be a psychologist. She has a 10 years’ experience in all kinds of addiction and family therapies. Two years ago, I asked her to put a career aside, and trust me as I found a great opportunity in The Netherlands to work as a Finance Project Manager for one of the biggest manufacturer of confectionery and pet food, as well as provider of animal care services.

She said yes. We said goodbye to our family and friends in France and moved to the Netherlands, in Eindhoven.  Being under pressure to move in a very limited time, we accepted to rent an outside-the-budget apartment, for a price way above the market average. We stopped contributing our French pension which stroke a crushing blow to our retirement plan. My wife stayed unemployed for the first year and didn’t get any unemployment allowance neither from The Netherlands nor from France, forcing us to spend out of our savings. 

We are now slowly learning Dutch, integrating into the nice city of Eindhoven, getting married this summer, planning to buy a house and raise kids here. We love living in The Netherlands. We feel surprisingly so safe in such an international environment. This country is a pragmatic country that has understood, before France and other nations, that it can’t live inward-looking, turned in on itself and become reclusive. And, on top of that, we know the sacrifices we had to and will still have to make that were supposed to be compensated by the 30% ruling.

But in the end, it looks like a deal is not a deal. By breaking its promise, the Dutch government will make me feel I betrayed my wife and have been used. If the 30% tax ruling is more efficient on 5 years than on 8 or 10 years, so be it. But 60.000 expatriates like me still plan to use it after 5 years and we had a deal, that should be honoured.