Dutch business not innovative enough
The business climate in the Netherlands is reasonable to good, but Dutch companies do not invest enough in research and new developments, according to a new report by the government statistics office CBS.
Companies also bring relatively few products onto the market and the number of start-ups and fast-growing companies is low in international terms.
Compared with other countries, particularly the US and Britain, the Netherlands sets up very few new enterprises. According to the CBS, this is partly because the Dutch have little enthusiasm for entrepreneurship.
Economic affairs minister Maria van der Hoeven calls the report ‘worrying’. The government wants schoolchildren and students to have more contact with the business world to increase interest in entrepreneurship.
When it comes to innovation, the Netherlands does less well than most other countries. Opportunities offered by markets and new developments are not made the most of and Dutch companies invest relatively little in research and development. This puts pressure on future growth.
According to the CBS, government regulations are one of the major problems facing Dutch businesses. Although regulations have been simplified over the past few years, the Netherlands still scores badly when it comes to government interference.
However, the Netherlands does well when it comes to fringe conditions for economic growth, such as economic stability, low inflation and long-term interest rates, as well as a low government deficit and state debt.
The report compares the Dutch business climate with that of 20 countries in the EU and the OECD. Most of the figures date from 2004 and 2005.
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