(Bloomberg) -- Technology companies including ASML Holding NV and Adyen NV called on the Dutch government to maintain a tax break that seeks to attract expatriates to the Netherlands.

Ingrid Thijssen, head of the Confederation of Netherlands Industry and Employers, said the government for budget reasons is considering shrinking or scrapping a rule that exempts 30% of an expat’s salary from income tax for five years. 

“We are trying to explain to the politicians that it isn’t a good move, but we haven’t been able to get it off the table so far,” she said in an interview. Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s government hasn’t publicly announced such a plan and the Dutch Finance Ministry declined to comment.

The plan drew the ire of dozens of Dutch technology companies that rely on foreign talent. “Between 15% and 70% of our employees come from outside the Netherlands,” executives including ASML Chief Executive Officer Peter Wennink, Adyen Chief Financial Officer Ingo Uytdehaage and Flow Traders NV CEO Dennis Dijkstra said in a letter to the government seen by Bloomberg. The tax benefit is essential to attracting international talent, the executives said.    

Rutte’s previous cabinet decided in 2018 to reduce the tax benefit from eight to five years. 

“This measure will really hurt companies like NXP, ASML and Philips,” Henk Volberda, a professor of strategy and innovation at the University of Amsterdam, told Bloomberg. He said 17% of Dutch job openings already can’t be filled. 

“Companies that operate in the Netherlands will move parts of their operations abroad and companies considering to be based here will think twice,” he said.

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