Form of Government: Constitutional monarchy
Area: 41 543 sq km
Population: 17 181 084 inhab. (estimate 2018)
Density: 413.57 inhab./sq km
Coordinates: lat. 54° - 51° N; long. 3° - 7° E
Capital: Amsterdam (capital) 854 047 inhab. (2017); Amsterdam 1 357 675 inhab. (2014), urban agglomeration; The Hague=’s-Gravenhage (seat of government) 532 561 inhab. (2017); The Hague 1 054 793 inhab. (2014), urban agglomeration
Currency: euro (100 cents)
Human development index: 0.931 (rank: 10)
Sovereign: King Willem-Alexander, since 30 April 2013
Prime Minister: Mark Rutte (VVD), in office since 14 October 2010, re-elected 26 October 2017
Dutch House of Representatives: seats based on the elections of 15 March 2017: VVD (People's Party for Freedom and Democracy, liberal), 33; PVV (Party for Freedom, populist xenophobic), 20; CDA (Christian Democratic Appeal), 19; D66 (Democrats 66, progressive liberal), 19; GL (Green Left), 14; SP (Socialist Party), 14; PvdA (Labour Party), 9; others, 22
Internet: www.cbs.nl (Statistics Netherlands)
Member of Benelux, Council of Europe, EBRD, EU, NATO, OAS observer, OECD, OSCE, UN, WTO

Netherlands

Nederland, Koninkrijk der Nederlanden
Useful information

International license plate code NL
International dialling code 0031
Travel vaccinations requirement none
Electricity (Voltage) 230
Driving side rigth
Internet code .nl

GMT  +1
DST  +2
DST duration (start-end) late March-late October

Annual average temperature (°C) Amsterdam 9.7
Average temperature in January/July (°C) Amsterdam 2.5/17
Daily sunshine hours in June/December (average) Amsterdam 7/1
Annual average precipitation (mm) Amsterdam 780
Days of rainfall (annual average) Amsterdam 127

Politics and current affairs

The European elections on 23 May 2019 were a turning point in the country’s politics due to the surprising affirmation of the traditional pro-European parties. The Labour Party won with 19% of the votes, while the liberals, led by Prime Minister Mark Rutte (VVD), came in second (14.4%). The results were worse than expected for the Eurosceptics, whose historic leader, Geert Wilders, was defeated by the new political party Forum for Democracy (10%).

Geography.
The Netherlands is bordered to the east by Germany, to the south by Belgium, and to the north and west by the North Sea. With the exception of the Ardennes hills in the southernmost province of Limburg, the Netherlands is a vast low-lying plain protected along its coast by a major system of sea-barriers, embankments and canals. The country’s largest river is the Rhine. The climate is maritime with abundant rainfall. The Bonaire Islands, which lie opposite the coast of Venezuela, are also part of the Netherlands, together with Sint Eustatius and Saba in the Lesser Antilles.

Government


Formerly the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands (from 1581) and an independent kingdom (from 1830), the country has been alternately governed since 1950 by the Christian-Democratic and Labour parties, often at the head of centre-left or centre-right coalitions. Under the Constitution of 17 February 1983, legislative power resides with the Crown and the Parliament (States-General) comprising two chambers elected with four-year mandates: the House of Representatives or Lower House (150 directly-elected members) and the Senate (75 members elected by provincial assemblies).


Defence.
In 2014 the Netherlands joined with other countries in the fight to limit the power of ISIS in Iraq.


Justice.
The judicial system is largely based on that of France, and has steadily worked to extend the civil rights of citizens. Same-sex marriages were legalized in 2000, and euthanasia in 2001.

Defence
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Air force22.3%2015
Army52.3%2015
Justice
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Crimes6 792.9per 100 000 pop.2012
Homicides0.6per 100 000 pop.2016
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Administrative division

Administrative divisions
Cities
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Amsterdam854 047inhab.2017
Rotterdam638 712inhab.2017
Urban agglomerations
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Amsterdam1 357 675inhab.2014
Rotterdam1 181 284inhab.2014
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Population

Population by age and gender (% - 2018)
75+
60-74
45-59
30-44
15-29
0-14
MALEAGEFEMALE

The population density is one of the highest in Western Europe. The number of immigrants exceeds that of emigrants, but large numbers of Dutch people continue to migrate.

Demographic statistics
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Birth rate9.92017
Death rate8.82017
Foreigners
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Foreigners, total2 079 329units2018
Turks191 513units2018
Ethnic groups
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Dutch87.9%2018
other7%2018


Religions
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
nonreligious/atheist49%2014
Catholic24%2014


Languages
DESCRIPTION
Dutch (Netherlandic) (official)
Frisian
Population by selected age groups
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
0-14 years16.3%2018
15-29 years18.5%2018


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Economy


Economic situation.
Following the positive results recorded in 2018 (+2.5%), economic growth should slow to under 2% owing to international tensions and a drop in internal demand. Employment remains strong, however.

Economy - General data
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Agricultural prod. index (2004-06=100)117.81index2016
Balance of trade76 639M US$2018
Economy - Employment
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Active population9 148 400units2018
Active population, Females46.6%2018
Economy - Unemployment
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Unemployment rate3.8%2018
Unemployment rate, Females48.3%2018
Economy - State budget
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Expenses197 337M LCU2018
Revenues202 723M LCU2018
Employment by economic activity
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
agriculture1.9%2018
industry14.6%2018
GDP by economic activity
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
agriculture1.8%2018
industry19.6%2018
Financial data
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Currency in circulation65.03BN LCU2018
International reserves38 431.7M US$2018
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Agriculture


Primary sector
Agriculture.
Cereals account for half of all arable land. Potatoes, sugar beet, market gardening and flower-growing are also important.
Livestock and fishing.
Almost half the added value of the primary sector comes from livestock farming (mainly cattle and pigs) which produces meat and dairy products, especially cheeses, which are widely exported. There is a modern, well developed fishing industry. Herring is the most important product, with its main processing and smoking centre at Vlaardingen. Oyster fishing is active in Zealand. The main fishing ports are Scheveningen, Katwijk, Vlaardingen and IJmuiden.

Land use
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
arable land31.79%2015
forests11.16%2015
Agriculture - products - Cereals
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
barley204.451000 t2017
cereals, total1 393.511000 t2017
Agriculture - products - Roots and tubers
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
potatoes7 391.8811000 t2017
roots and tubers, total7 391.8811000 t2017
Agriculture - products - Vegetables
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
asparagus20.81000 t2017
cabbages271.71000 t2017
Agriculture - products - Pulses
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
beans, dry4.6481000 t2017
beans, green39.21000 t2017
Agriculture - products - Grape
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
grapes0.41000 t2017
Agriculture - products - Oilcrops
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
rapeseed7.8941000 t2017
Agriculture - products - Industrial crops
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
sugar beet7 924.2671000 t2017
Agriculture - products - Flax
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
flax fibre and tow10.2241000 t2017
linseed1.5791000 t2017
Agriculture - products - Fiber plants
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
hemp tow waste9.5391000 t2017
Agriculture - products - Fruits
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
apples2271000 t2017
blueberries8.7291000 t2017
Agriculture - products - Others
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
mushrooms3001000 t2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Cereals
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
barley29.7391000 ha2017
maize8.6711000 ha2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Roots and tubers
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
potatoes160.7911000 ha2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Vegetables
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
cabbages6.1691000 ha2017
carrots and turnips9.4981000 ha2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Pulses
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
beans, dry1.3471000 ha2017
beans, green3.2911000 ha2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Grape
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
grape0.0711000 ha2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Oilcrops
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
rapeseed1.941000 ha2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Industrial crops
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
sugar beet85.3471000 ha2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Flax
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
flax fibre and tow2.4941000 ha2017
linseed2.5021000 ha2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Fiber plants
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
hemp tow waste1.2721000 ha2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Fruits
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
apples6.9531000 ha2017
blueberries0.8321000 ha2017
Agriculture - areas harvested - Others
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
mushrooms0.0631000 ha2017
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Forests-Livestock-Fishing

Forestry
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
timber3 113 8862017
Livestock - Cattle
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
cattle4 0301000 heads2017
cattle and buffaloes4 0301000 heads2017
Livestock - Pigs
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
pigs12 4091000 heads2017
Livestock - Sheep
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
sheep798.831000 heads2017
Livestock - Goats
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
goats532.871000 heads2017
Livestock - Equines
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
equines, total140.5661000 heads2017
horses140.5661000 heads2017
Livestock - Poultry
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
birds106 8641000 heads2017
Livestock - Livestock products
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
butter140.5241000 t2014
cheese771.9411000 t2014
Fishing
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
crustaceans and molluscs80 520t2017
freshwater fishes3 814t2017
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Minerals


Secondary sector
Minerals.
The country has vast natural gas reserves both offshore and on the mainland: however, the largest gas field in Groningen will be closed down by 2030 and on-site production reduced by 75% by 2023. From July 2019 the BBL pipeline also transports gas from the UK to the Netherlands, further integrating the European market. A regasification terminal is active in Rotterdam. Oil production is important (fields of Coevorden-Schoonebeek, Rijswijk). There are also significant deposits of salt.
Energy and industry.
Large oil refineries operate in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Vlissingen. A nuclear power station is active at Borssele. A connection with the Danish electricity grid is in operation. Major industries include textile fibres (man-made and synthetic) and fertilizers. Production of salt, chlorine and soda is also relevant. The iron and steel industry is based at IJmuiden, Budel, Arnhem, Delfzijl and Rotterdam. Big multinationals based in the Netherlands include Unilever (agriculture and food, cleaning products), Royal Dutch Shell (oil), Philips (electronics), FCA and Renault (automotive). Mechanical industry includes ship-building, automobiles and railway workshops. There are textile mills at Twente (cotton) and Tilburg (wool). Other industries include tobacco, sugar, margarine, cocoa and chocolate, beers, spirits, leather, diamonds, porcelain and pottery.

Mineral resources - Energy minerals
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
natural gas46 349M m³2017
oil, crude883.31000 t2018
Mineral resources - Non-metal ores
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
salt7 0001000 t2018
Mineral resources - Rocks
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
sand and gravel - t54 0001000 t2018
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Energy

Electric energy - Generated
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
- thermal88 899.56M kWh2016
- other renew.16 542M kWh2016
Electric energy - Installed capacity
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
- thermal26 1471000 kW2016
- other renew.7 5071000 kW2016
Electric energy - Total production and capacity
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
total net generation109 291.56M kWh2016
total installed capacity34 1731000 kW2016
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Industry

Industry - Iron and Steel, Metallurgy
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
aluminium501000 t2017
aluminium, primary501000 t2017
Industry - Machinery and transport equipment
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
bikes887 131no.2016
cars155 000no.2017
Industry - Electrical and electronics
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
air conditioners12 177no.2016
fridges67 610no.2015
Industry - Petrochemicals
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
bitumen2251000 t2016
petrol14 848.41000 t2014
Industry - Chemicals
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
ammonia2 3001000 t2018
caustic soda0.81000 t2014
Industry - Textiles
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
carpets159 0041000 m²2016
Industry - Clothing and footwear
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
footwear372 466pairs2016
Industry - Food and beverages
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
beer of barley2 369.61000 t2014
fish, frozen54.41000 t2016
Industry - Tobacco
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
cigars2 545.3M units2005
tobacco36 889t2016
Industry - Paper and wood products
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
chemi-mechanical pulp37.41000 t2017
mechanical pulp37.41000 t2017
Industry - Glass and other non-metallic mineral products
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
cement2 2601000 t2016
Industry - Various
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
chemicals production13 940.7M US$2016
food, beverages and tobacco production15 627.9M US$2016
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Trade


Tertiary sector.
The tertiary sector is worth over 75% of the GDP. The country shows a tendency toward foreign trade and constitutes the first gateway to the European market. Many services are focused in the transportation and logistics sectors. Rotterdam is the biggest port in Europe. The country aims to become a financial hub after Brexit.


Main exports (M US$ - 2017) machinery 56 408, telecommunications equipment 50 833, petroleum products 44 591, computers and accessories 36 845, chemicals 36 343, electrical and electronic equipment 36 283, pharmaceuticals 33 530, optical and electro-medical appliances 30 093, vehicles and parts thereof 27 332, plastics 25 450, iron and steel 23 251, fruit and vegetables 15 096, plants and flowers 10 327, apparel and accessories 10 159, meat 9 847, crude oil 9 263, aluminium 8 769


Finance and banking.
The Amsterdam Stock Exchange belongs to the Euronext group.

Composition of goods exports
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
manufactures67.843% of goods exports2017
food products16.716% of goods exports2017
International trade by country - Merchandise Export
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Germany133 522M US$2018
Belgium59 289M US$2018
International trade by country - Merchandise Import
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Germany91 755M US$2018
Belgium52 172M US$2018
Merchandise Export
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
2018722 668M US$ -
2017652 065M US$ -
Merchandise Import
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
2018646 029M US$ -
2017574 646M US$ -
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Tourism


Tourism. The cities, mainly Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht, attract most tourists.

International Tourism
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Expenditures22 044M US$2017
Number of arrivals17 924 000units2017
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Communications


Transport.
The highly developed canal and river network accounts for about a third of all freight transport and connects directly with Germany, Belgium, France and Switzerland.

Communication - Transport
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Civil aviation, km flown459 500 000km flown2004
Civil aviation, passengers carried42 770.61000 units2017
Communication - Media and telecommunication
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Broadband subscribers423.269per 1000 pop.2017
Computers912per 1000 pop.2008
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Social and welfare


Education, culture & research.
Compulsory education is full-time from 5 to 16 years and part-time for two years.


Social security and health.
The highly efficient social security system is partially private, the state only being responsible for pensions, low-income benefit and disability benefit.

Social statistics - Education
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Expected years of schooling18years2016
Gradautes, percentage37.2%2017
Social statistics - Students and Teachers by level
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Teachers, primary level101 643units2016
Teachers, secondary level111 849units2016
Social statistics - Social protection
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Social protection spending37.6% of total expenses2016
Social protection spending16.7% of GDP2018
Social statistics - Health
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Hospital beds3.6per 1000 pop.2016
Physicians3.5per 1000 pop.2016
Social statistics - Diseases
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
HIV0.2% of adults2017
HIV, total0.1%2001
Museums
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Museums694units2016
Museums, visitors34 400 000units2016
Research
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Research and development spending1.99% of GDP2017
Other social indicators
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
Access to clean fuels and technologies for cooking100%2016
Access to electricity100%2017
Household consumption expenditure
DESCRIPTIONVALUEUNITSYEAR
clothing, footwear5.4%2017
education0.7%2017
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