“Working to 67 is inevitable,” headlines De Volkskrant. Indeed, it looks as though the Dutch will have to work two years longer than they do now, as the government proposed back in March 2009. Negotiations between labour and management and a panel of independent experts, convened within the framework of the Social and Economic Council (SER), have completely broken down, reports the Amsterdam daily. Aimed at coming up with an alternative to the government’s retirement plan, the talks dragged on, in vain, for six months. The Volkskrant bemoans that this is a “hard blow to our consensus model” – known in The Netherlands as the “polder model” (the reference being to the lowlands protected by dikes), and the SER as “the most important polder organisation” – and that the latter has now put itself “on the sidelines”. So the ball is now in the court of Christian Democrat social minister Piet Hein Donner, who has to make up a €35 million deficit in the pension coffers from 2011.