All the information on the Dutch-language website is up-to-date. The translations into English in this part of the site are currently being adapted to reflect the new situation after the abdication and investiture. A factsheet with up-to-date information for the media on the abdication and investiture is available on this site in English, German, French and Spanish.
The Queen to host dinner in the Rijksmuseum on the eve of her abdication, 29 April 2013
On Monday 29 April, on the eve of her abdication and the investiture of King Willem-Alexander, Her Majesty the Queen will host a dinner in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.
In addition to His Royal Highness the Prince of Orange and Her Royal Highness Princess Máxima of the Netherlands, the guests will include Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands, Professor Pieter van Vollenhoven, Their Royal Highnesses Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands, Her Royal Highness Princess Irene, Her Royal Highness Princess Christina and Her Royal Highness Princess Mabel.
Among the other guests will be the members of the royal and special delegations (see news item RVD 28 April), the members of the Council of Ministers for the Kingdom, the Governors and Prime Ministers of Aruba, Curaçao and St Maarten, the Presidents of the States of Aruba, Curaçao and St Maarten, the Presidents of the House of Representatives and Senate of the States General, the Vice President of the Council of State, the Queen's Commissioner in North Holland, the Mayor of Amsterdam and the Director of the Queen's Office.
The dinner will take place in the Gallery of Honour at the Rijksmuseum, home to the museum's most celebrated works from the 17th century, including Johannes Vermeer'sThe Milkmaidand the married coupleMassaby Frans Hals. The most famous of all, theThe Night Watchby Rembrandt, hangs at the end of the Gallery of Honour in the Night Watch Gallery. The Rijksmuseum was reopened by the Queen, following extensive renovation, on Saturday 13 April 2013.
Royal Family, Royal Delegations and Special Delegations at the abdication and investiture, 28 April 2013
The following members of the Royal Family, Royal Delegations and Special Delegationswill be present at the ceremonies surrounding the abdication and investiture on 30 April.
- The Queen / Princess Beatrix
- The Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima / the King and Queen
- Princess Catharina-Amalia, Princess Alexia and Princess Ariane
- Princess Mabel
- Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien
- Princess Irene
- Princess Margriet and Professor Pieter van Vollenhoven
- Princess Christina
- Prince Carlos and Princess Annemarie
- Princess Margarita and Mr Tjalling ten Cate
- Prince Jaime
- Princess Carolina and Mr Albert Brenninkmeijer
- Prince Maurits and Princess Marilène
- Prince Bernhard and Princess Annette
- Prince Pieter Christiaan and Princess Anita
- Prince Floris and Princess Aimée
- Mr Bernardo Guillermo
- Mr Nicolás Guillermo
- Ms Juliana Guillermo
- Prince Philippe and Princess Mathilde of Belgium
- Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad al Khalifa of Bahrain
- Crown Prince Billah and Princess Sarah of Brunei
- Crown Prince Frederik and Crown Princess Mary of Denmark
- Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako of Japan
- Prince El Hassan bin Talal and Princess Sarvath El Hassan of Jordan
- Hereditary Prince Alois and Hereditary Princess Sophie of Liechtenstein
- Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume and Hereditary Grand Duchess Stéphanie of Luxembourg
- Princess Lalla Salma of Morocco
- Prince Albert II of Monaco
- Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princees Mette-Marit of Norway
- Haitham bin Tareq al Said (Oman)
- Sheikha Moza bint Nasser al-Misned (Qatar)
- The Prince and Princess of Asturias (Spain)
- Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn (Thailand)
- Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn (Thailand)
- The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall (United Kingdom)
- Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed al Nahyan (United Arab Emirates)
- Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel of Sweden
- Mr Amado Boudou, Vice-President of Argentina, and Senator Beatriz Rojkes de Alperovich, Provisional President of the Senate
- Mr David Johnston, Governor-General of Canada, and Mrs Sharon Johnston
- Professor Rita Süssmuth, former President of the Bundestag, and Professor Hans Süssmuth (Germany)
- Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan and Mrs Zeynep Babacan of Turkey
- Mr Suh Sang-Kee, Chairman of the Intelligence Committee of the National Assembly (Republic of Korea)
- Mr José Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission, and Mrs Margarida Barroso
- Mr Martin Schulz, President of the European Parliament
- Mr Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council, and Mrs Geertrui Van Rompuy
- Count Jacques Rogge, President of the International Olympic Committee, and Countess Anne Rogge-Bovyn
- Mr Kofi A. Annan, former Secretary-General of the United Nations, and Mrs Nane Annan
- Mrs Helen Clark, UNDP Administrator
Outline of Abdication and Investiture Programme, 19 March 2013
Programme outline (subject to change):
29 April 2013
Dinner, at the invitation of Her Majesty the Queen, with members of the Royal Family and other royal and foreign missions at the Rijksmuseum.
30 April 2013
Abdication of Her Majesty the Queen in the Moseszaal of the Royal Palace Amsterdam. Those present will include the Presidents of the Senate and the House of Representatives, the Council of Ministers for the Kingdom and members of the Royal Family, the governors and prime-ministers of Aruba, Curaçao and Sint Maarten.
The Queen will give a short address. The Director of the Queen's Office will then read aloud the instrument of abdication to which the Queen will then give her assent by means of her signature. Finally the instrument of abdication will be signed by the witnesses.
His Majesty King Willem-Alexander, Her Majesty Queen Máxima and Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands appear on the balcony of the Royal Palace Amsterdam. Princess Beatrix and the King will both give a short address, after which the Wilhelmus will be played. Her Royal Highness the Princess of Orange and Their Royal Highnesses Princess Alexia and Princess Ariane will then join their parents on the balcony.
Opening of the joint session of the States General, following the entry of the members of the States General, the States of Aruba, Curaçao and St Maarten, the Council of Ministers for the Kingdom and the Council of State.
Princess Beatrix and other members of the Royal Family proceed to the Nieuwe Kerk.
The King and the main cortege proceed to the Nieuwe Kerk.
Swearing in and investiture of the King at the joint session of the two Houses of the States General in the Nieuwe Kerk. The King will deliver an address and be sworn in. The President of the joint session, Fred de Graaf, will deliver an address and make a solemn declaration, after which members of the States General and the States of Aruba, Curaçao and St Maarten swear an oath or make an affirmation.
The King and his retinue proceed to the Royal Palace Amsterdam.
Reception for royal and foreign missions, dignitaries and members of the States General and the States of Aruba, Curaçao and St Maarten, Council of Ministers for the Kindom, the Council of State, governors and prime-ministers of Aruba, Curacao and Sint Maarten and the Corps Diplomatique in the Royal Palace Amsterdam.
The Song for the King will be performed in the presence of the King and Queen, prior to the water pageant. This will take place at the EYE Film Museum via a video link with Ahoy Rotterdam.
The King and Queen will take part in a water pageant with their daughters on the River IJ. They will sail from EYE Film Institute past the Oever Park and the 'Kop van Java'. At several places along the route they will be treated to a festive programme, including a 'mini Sail'.
Celebration, hosted by the Prime Minister on behalf of the Council of Ministers for the Kingdom.
NOS and RTL to interview future King and Queen
In the run-up to the abdication and investiture on 30 April 2013, the broadcasters NOS and RTL Nieuws will be speaking with the Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima. The couple will be interviewed by the news anchors Mariëlle Tweebeeke of NOS/Nieuwsuur and Rick Nieman of RTL Nieuws. The interview will be broadcast on Wednesday 17 April at 20.30 on the television channels Nederland 1 and RTL 4.
King will have new military status
In view of his forthcoming assumption of the position of head of state, His Royal Highness the Prince of Orange is to relinquish his active military status. Before his investiture as King of the Netherlands, he will at his request be granted an honourable discharge.
Currently the Prince of Orange holds the rank of commodore (commandeur) in the Royal Netherlands Navy and corresponding general officer ranks in the other armed services. However, as head of state and a member of the government, the King can no longer hold an active military position within the armed forces. The Prince explained the situation to Ministry of Defence staff in its weekly publicationDefensiekrant.
King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima release itinerary for tour of provinces, 22 February 2013
After the royal succession on 30 April 2013 the King and Queen will tour all the provinces of the Netherlands in May and June, visiting two provinces a day. The Queen's Commissioners have been asked to submit suggestions for the programme. The royal couple will not just visit the provincial capitals, but a number of other locations as well. In mid-November they will tour the Caribbean part of the Kingdom.
The dates for the visits are as follows:
- 28 May - Groningen / Drenthe
- 30 May - Gelderland / Utrecht
- 12 June - Limburg / North Brabant
- 14 June - Friesland / North Holland
- 19 June - Flevoland / Overijssel
- 21 June - Zeeland / South Holland
The King's standard and coat of arms, 18 February 2013
From his investiture onwards, His Majesty the King will fly the royal standard. His coat of arms will be identical to that used by Queen Beatrix. Contrary to the announcement in the press release of 29 January therefore, there will be no change in the design.
The royal coat of arms, which is the same as the coat of arms of the Kingdom, has only been altered once since the foundation of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. In 1907, at the instigation of Queen Wilhelmina, the number of crowns was reduced to one, surmounting the shield. At the same time, it became possible to add the royal mantle, also surmounted by a crown. The addition of other decorative elements to the coat of arms is optional.
After her abdication the Queen will adopt the coat of arms created for her (and for her sisters) in 1938 as Princess of the Netherlands, Princess of Orange-Nassau and Princess of Lippe-Biesterfeld.
The royal standard will be flown above Noordeinde Palace in The Hague and at Eikenhorst in Wassenaar when the King is in the country. Queen Wilhelmina adopted this standard in 1908, and it was also flown, unchanged, by Queen Juliana and Queen Beatrix.
Outline of Abdication and Investiture Programme 30 April, 12 February 2013
Programme outline (subject to change):
30 April 2013
Abdication of Her Majesty the Queen in the Moseszaal of the Royal Palace Amsterdam. Those present will include the Presidents of the Senate and the House of Representatives, the Council of Ministers for the Kingdom and members of the Royal Family. The Queen signs the instrument of abdication, which is read aloud by the Director of the Queen's Office.
His Majesty the King, Her Majesty the Queen and Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands appear on the balcony of the Palace. Princess Beatrix and the King will both give a short address. Her Royal Highness the Princess of Orange and Their Royal Highnesses Princess Alexia and Princess Ariane will then join their parents on the balcony.
The King and his retinue proceed to the Nieuwe Kerk.
Swearing in and investiture of the King at a joint session of the two Houses of the States General in the Nieuwe Kerk. The King delivers an address and is sworn in. The President of the two Houses, Fred de Graaf, delivers an address and makes a solemn declaration, after which every member of the States General and the States of Aruba, Curaçao and St Maarten swears an oath or makes an affirmation.
Reception for dignitaries and members of the States General in the Royal Palace Amsterdam.
Composition of National Investiture Committee announced, 8 February 2013
The Prime Minister has announced the members of the National Investiture Committee, which is in charge of coordinating various festivities to mark the investiture on 30 April 2013.
The Committee will be chaired by Dr Hans Wijers. The other members are:
- Ahmed Aboutaleb, mayor of Rotterdam
- Mavis Albertina, TV producer and media consultant
- Joop van den Ende, theatrical producer
- Andree van Es, member of Amsterdam municipal executive
- Richard Krajicek, ABN Tennis Tournament director and founder of the Richard Krajicek Foundation
- Roland van der Vorst, brand consultant and publicist
- Ben Woldring, internet entrepeneur
The Committee members will use their expertise to fulfil the
royal couple's express wish for the entire population to be able to
take part in the celebrations. All parts of the Kingdom will be
involved. The Committee will also coordinate initiatives to honour
Queen Beatrix and pay tribute to the new King and Queen. The actual
organisation of the abdication and investiture are not among its
The Committee will announce details of the activities at a later date.
Book of thanks and congratulations opened, 5 February 2013
Netherlands Government Information Service (RVD) press release no. 25
Following the announcement of the abdication of Her Majesty the Queen and the succession to the throne of His Royal Highness the Prince of Orangeon 30 April 2013, abook of thanks and congratulations was opened today at www.koninklijkhuis.nl.
When he succeeds his mother, the Prince of Orange will become King Willem-Alexander. Princess Máxima will become Queen Máxima.
Anyone wishing to thank the Queen or congratulate the Prince and Princess can leave a message in the book of thanks and congratulations. A selection of the messages will be published at www.koninklijkhuis.nl.
Queen's Office to be renamed, 30 January 2013
After the Queen's abdication, the 'Queen's Office' will be renamed 'King's Office'.
This change of name is in accordance with the Decree of 18 December 2003 containing provisions on the King's Office.
Prince of Orange resigns from official positions, 29 January 2013
In preparation for his accession to the throne, His Royal Highness the Prince of Orange is resigning from his official positions, with due regard for the terms of office and procedures of the organisations concerned. In the year ahead Her Majesty the Queen and the Prince of Orange will decide as to the continuation of their honorary posts and their patronage of organisations. Further announcements will be made on this subject in due course. In principle Princess Máxima will continue as Queen to hold her current honorary and other posts.
The Prince has asked the President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to immediately relieve him of his duties as an IOC member in the Netherlands. Under the Olympic Charter, this means that the Prince's resignation must be approved at the IOC's next session in Buenos Aires in September 2013 and will take effect at the end of 2013.
His resignation as Chairman of the United Nations Secretary-General's Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation (UNSGAB) will take place in consultation with the Secretary-General. He will also be resigning as Chairperson of the Water Advisory Committee, in consultation with the Minister of Infrastructure and the Environment.
The King's standard and coat of arms, 29 January 2013
From his investiture onwards, His Majesty the King will fly the royal standard. The royal standard will be flown above the palaces where the monarch resides and works and at Eikenhorst in Wassenaar when he is in the country. Queen Wilhelmina adopted this standard in 1908, and it has also been flown by Queen Juliana and Queen Beatrix.
From the time of his investiture the King will also use the royal coat of arms. This coat of arms is identical to the one used by Queen Beatrix except that it features a helmet instead of a crown. The royal coat of arms is the same as the coat of arms of the Kingdom, with the addition of the royal mantle. Illustrations of the royal standard and the royal coat of arms can be seen on www.koninklijkhuis.nl.
Following her abdication, Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands will use the same coat of arms as before 1980, which is identical to that of her sisters.
The new head of state and his wife plan to visit the entire Kingdom, 29 January 2013
Within a year of ascending the throne, King Willem-Alexander, accompanied by Queen Máxima, will visit all the Dutch provinces and the Caribbean parts of the Kingdom.
State and official visits, 28 January 2013
Announcements will be made as soon as possible concerning planned State and official visits in the period before and after the abdication and investiture. The same applies to working visits and other scheduled events.
Presidency of the Council of State, 28 January 2013
On the abdication of Her Majesty the Queen the presidency of the
Council of State will pass automatically to His Majesty the King,
who is President of the Council under article 74 of the Dutch
On reaching the age of majority the Prince of Orange was automatically granted a seat in the Advisory Division of the Council of State. Her Royal Highness Princess Máxima of the Netherlands was granted a seat in the Advisory Division of the Council of State on 1 October 2004. Princess Catharina-Amalia will be granted her seat in the Advisory Division of the Council of State when she reaches the age of 18.
For more information on the Council of State please visit www.raadvanstate.nl.
Changes in the Royal Household, 28 January 2013
When a new monarch ascends the throne, it is customary for certain Officers of the Royal Household to resign their posts, to enable the new monarch to exercise his constitutional right to organise his Household, taking due account of the public interest (article 41 of the Constitution).The Officers in question include the Grand Master of the Royal Household, the Chief of the Military Household, the Principal Secretary to the Queen, the Treasurer, the Master of Ceremonies, the Marshal of the Court, the Comptroller of the Royal Palaces, the Crown Equerry, the Director of the Royal Archives and the Director of Human Resources.
Information about abdication and investiture on Royal House website, 28 January 2013
In the coming months preparations will take place for the abdication of Her Majesty the Queen and the subsequent investiture of His Majesty the King. In the runup to these events, regular information updates will be provided on the Royal House website.
The King and Queen's family home, 28 January 2013
Following the inauguration, the family of His Majesty the King will initially continue to live at Eikenhorst in Wassenaar. At an appropriate moment the family will move to Huis ten Bosch Palace in The Hague.
In the intervening period Huis ten Bosch Palace will be used for official receptions and meetings. Noordeinde Palace will continue to be used as the monarch's place of work.
An announcement will be made in due course concerning when Her Majesty the Queen, then Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands, will take up residence at Drakensteyn Castle in Lage Vuursche.
Time and place of abdication and investiture, 28 January 2013
The official programme for the abdication and investiture will take place on 30 April 2013. Her Majesty the Queen will sign the Instrument of Abdication at the Royal Palace, Amsterdam. The investiture of His Majesty the King will then take place at the Nieuwe Kerk in Amsterdam.
King's Day on 27 April from 2014 , 28 January 2013
From 2014 onwards, King's Day will be celebrated on 27 April, the birthday of the Prince of Orange and future King Willem-Alexander. In 2014 it will be celebrated by the Royal Family in Amstelveen and De Rijp. These municipalities will be able to use the programme that has already been developed for the planned celebration of Queen's Day on 30 April this year, which will assume a different character because of the abdication and investiture.
Prince of Orange to become King Willem-Alexander, 28 January 2013
When Queen Beatrix abdicates, His Royal Highness the Prince of
Orange will become King Willem-Alexander, and Her Royal Highness
Princess Máxima of the Netherlands will become Queen Máxima. They
will both be addressed as 'Your Majesty'. After abdicating, Queen
Beatrix will be called Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrix of the
Netherlands, Princess of Orange-Nassau, etc. As soon as the Prince
of Orange ascends the throne, his eldest child, Her Royal Highness
Princess Catharina-Amalia, will be the first in line to the throne.
She will then become the Princess of Orange (under section 7 of the
Membership of the Royal House Act).
The titles and names of the other members of the Royal Family will not change after Queen Beatrix's abdication. The membership of the Royal House and the line of succession will however change under the above Act.
After the abdication, the line of succession will begin with the children of His Majesty the King: Her Royal Highness the Princess of Orange, Her Royal Highness Princess Alexia, and Her Royal Highness Princess Ariane. The next in line will be His Royal Highness Prince Constantijn, his children and finally Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet.
After the abdication, the children of Her Royal Highness Princess Margriet of the Netherlands and Professor Pieter van Vollenhoven will no longer be eligible for the throne. They will also cease to be members of the Royal House.
Extra cabinet meeting, 28 January 2013
In the light of Her Majesty the Queen's announcement of her abdication, the cabinet will hold an extra meeting tomorrow morning at 10:30.
Prime Minister to give speech in response to Queen's address, 28 January 2013
Following the broadcast of the address by Her Majesty the Queen this evening, the Prime Minister will give a response from his office in The Hague. His speech, which will be recorded shortly beforehand, will be broadcast on radio and television. No further information will be released about his speech until after the broadcast.
Some time after the broadcast, it will also be possible to view the speech via the websites www.rijksoverheid.nl and www.youtube.com/DeMinPres. The text of the Prime Minister's speech will be posted on www.koninklijkhuis.nl after the broadcast.
Queen to deliver address from Huis ten Bosch Palace, 28 January 2013
An address by Her Majesty the Queen will be broadcast this evening at 19.00 on radio and television. No further information will be released about the address, which was recorded earlier today at Huis ten Bosch Palace, until after the broadcast. Some time after the broadcast, it will also be possible to view the address via the websites www.koninklijkhuis.nl and www.youtube.com/koninklijkhuis. The text of the Queen's address will be posted on www.koninklijkhuis.nl after the broadcast.