The Invest in Holland network, in which the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency (NFIA) represents the national government as a partner, was involved in 423 investment projects by foreign companies in 2021.
These included both new establishments and expansion investments in the Netherlands. These projects are expected to account for nearly 13,400 direct jobs and an investment value of 2.3 billion euros in the first three years. This brings the number of companies choosing the Netherlands back to 2019 levels. In 2020, the number was substantially lower when, influenced in part by Corona, foreign companies postponed or changed investment decisions. A growing proportion of these companies are strengthening regional (knowledge) ecosystems and actively contributing to the social and economic goals set by the Netherlands.
Micky Adriaansens, Minister of Economic Affairs and Climate, and responsible for the NFIA emphasizes the importance of foreign companies: "Companies and entrepreneurs are indispensable for the Netherlands. Foreign companies also make an important contribution to our economy. For example, they account for 30% of total private spending in research and development in the Netherlands. Commissioned by the government, NFIA has been focusing more on attracting high-quality activities around innovation, digitization and sustainability since 2020. I am pleased that we can see the first results of this in the annual figures."
Hilde van der Meer, NFIA Commissioner and chair of the Invest in Holland collective: "The Netherlands is committed to finding sustainable, innovative and digital solutions to societal challenges. Therefore, Invest in Holland welcomes and assists foreign companies that contribute to this and strengthen our international ecosystems. Our country offers an excellent business climate for developing future-oriented innovations for the European and global market."
Investing in the future together
Since 2020, the NFIA and the Invest in Holland network have proactively focused on attracting companies that accelerate sustainability, provide new digital applications or enable future innovations. Several examples of this could already be seen in 2021.
For example, in 2021, the US-based Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS) began construction of their first European CAR T-cell therapy facility in Leiden. BMS is developing personalized therapies for patients with blood cancer at this facility, contributing to the Netherlands' growing role as an international leader in CAR T cell therapy.
Scotland's Enough began construction of a plant producing alternative proteins in 2021. The plant in Sas van Gent produces circular raw materials from residues from the nearby Cargill facility; and leads a European research consortium on alternative proteins, which includes Wageningen University & Research.
Indian-American Quantiphi announced last year that they are opening a new service delivery center in Amsterdam. From there, they will help the healthcare, education and public sector, among others, streamline processes through AI, cloud and data solutions. In the future, the company aims to grow further in the Netherlands and further develop their R&D together with Dutch engineers.
Increasing share of companies from Europe
Of the 423 foreign companies that chose the Netherlands in 2021, a third came from Europe (32%), a third from the Americas (30%) and Asia (30%). The share of European companies was higher in 2021 than in previous years.
This growth is largely due to the increase in the number of Brexit companies that decided to locate in the Netherlands last year. Since the 2016 referendum, 316 Brexit companies have chosen our country. Together, these companies' plans are expected to account for nearly 8,000 jobs and €782 million in investments in the first three years.
Invest in Holland and the NFIA are committed to attracting foreign companies with economic added value to our country. The organizations do not support letterbox companies or other paper constructions. The work pays specific attention to companies that help the Netherlands achieve social goals; companies that accelerate sustainability, provide new digital applications or enable future innovations.