Foreign Investments Europe Why invest in Holland
The Netherlands provides a strategic location to serve markets within Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The central geographical position of the Netherlands, combined with accessibility and an excellent infrastructure are only some of the reasons why numerous European, American and Asian companies have established their facilities in the Netherlands.
International business environment
The Netherlands, long Europe's trading crossroads, is an obvious choice to locate a pan-European operation, whether it is a European headquarters, a Shared Services Center, a Customer Care Center, a distribution and logistics operation, or an R&D facility. The country's pro-business environment creates a gateway to Europe that helps international companies succeed throughout the continent. An international outlook and openness to foreign investment is firmly ingrained in the Dutch culture, and this has yielded a wealth of world-class business partners who know how to deal with global business challenges in today's economy.
Superior logistics and technology infrastructure
The Port of Rotterdam is the world's third largest seaport, while Schiphol Airport is recognized as one of the major business hubs in Europe claiming over 100 international awards over the last couple of decades. The Netherlands is also classified as one of the most ‘wired' countries in the world, a dynamic force in electronic commerce, communications and outsourcing. More than a decade of investment in high-speed Internet, cable and digital communication systems, as well as the rapid adoption of state-of-the-art computer and mobile phone technology, have created an ideal base for companies seeking to take advantage of modern technology.
The Northern Netherlands is very well located and has excellent direct connections by road, rail and (inland) waterways to Schiphol and Rotterdam, Northern Germany and the Ruhrarea, Scandinavia and the Baltics. Part of the infrastructure in the Northern Netherlands are 2 fully equipped seaports and an international airport. It is also the power region of the Netherlands with 2 large electrical powerplants installed and 3 under construction and direct powerlines supplying hydropower from Norway and windpower from Denmark.
Favorable fiscal climate
The Dutch tax system has a number of features that may be very beneficial in international tax planning. The relevant factors include a corporate income tax rate of 20 percent on the first € 200,000, and 25 percent for taxable profits exceeding € 200,000, which is well below the EU national average. In addition, the Dutch ruling practice, which provides clarity and certainty on tax assessments in advance, can be obtained on future transactions, investments or corporate structures. There is also a broad tax treaty network, reducing withholding taxes on dividends, interests and royalties (for interest and royalties, in some cases, taxes are reduced to 0 percent).
Additionally, there are no withholding taxes on outgoing interest and royalty payments. Dutch tax law also provides the participation exemption, which states that all benefits related to a qualifying shareholding, including cash dividends, dividends-in-kind, bonus shares, hidden profit distributions and capital gains, are exempt from Dutch corporate income tax.
Furthermore, a patent box called ‘The Innovation Box’ has been introduced, resulting in an effective tax rate of 5 percent for income in relation to self-developed intangible assets for which a patent or an R&D statement has been obtained. There are also advantages in debt and loss structuring: the Netherlands provides companies the ability to carry forward losses for nine years, and to carry them backward for one year.
Finally, there is the 30 percent ruling, which is a tax-free reimbursement of 30 percent of the employee's salary, provided that the employee has been recruited or assigned from abroad and has specific expertise scarce in the Dutch labor market.
Highly educated, multilingual and flexible workforce
The Netherlands features one of the most highly educated, flexible and motivated workforces in Europe. Dutch professionals are also among the most multilingual in the world, enabling them to successfully operate in companies in any industry serving customers throughout the continent.
The university of Groningen enjoys an international reputation as one of the oldest and leading research universities in Europe. Colleges in Groningen, Leeuwarden and Emmen attract students from outside the region, national as well as international. They offer degree programmes at Bachelor's, Master's and PhD levels in virtually every field, many of them completely taught in English. More and more students stay in the region to be part of our workforce.
Quality of life
The Netherlands is proud to have a high standard of living, while maintaining an affordable life for its residents. The costs of living, housing, education and cultural activities are lower than in most Western-European countries. The Northern Netherlands combines attractive small cities and town with beautiful landscapes. Due to the less dense population in comparison with the rest of the Netherlands, real estate costs in the Northern Netherlands are significantly more attractive and traffic jams are very rare.
Facts & Figures
Area: 11,389 km2 (27,8% of the Netherlands)
Working population: 692,000
Companies established: 101,300
Capital:Groningen (180,600 inhabitants)
Area: 2,960 km2 (land 2,333; water 627)
Working population: 246,000
Companies established: 31,100
Capital:Leeuwarden (92,900 inhabitants)
Area: 5,749 km2 (land 3,342; water 2,407)
Working population: 254,000
Companies established: 41,200
Capital:Assen (62,200 inhabitants)
Area: 2,680 km2 (land 2,641; water 39)
Working population: 192,000
Companies established: 29,000