American companies cut their investments in the Netherlands

US companies are investing less in the Netherlands, partly due to measures to boost investment at home and partly due to Dutch plans to tackle shell companies, according to broadcaster NOS.

Figures from the US department of commerce show that US investment in the Netherlands fell by over $70bn in the first quarter of this year. About 80% of the money invested in the Netherlands by US firms is usually pushed through to other companies via Dutch holdings, NOS said.

The government is taking various steps to make the Netherlands less attractive to letter box firms, who pump money into the Netherlands to take advantage of low tax rates and the lack of tax on royalties.

Tax minister Menno Snel has outlined a range of measures aimed at curbing this, the first of which will come into effect next year.

Amcham, the American Chamber of Commerce in the Netherlands, says it is concerned about the new figures. The trend has been visible for some time, director Patrick Mikkelsen told NOS.

‘This has everything to do with the measures the Dutch plan to introduce,’ he said.

However, he warned that the measures to tackle tax avoidance will also hit companies which actually want to invest in the Netherlands. ‘These figures are in line with what we are hearing on the ground,’ he told NOS.

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