In-depth country-focused analysis on the Netherlands' economic, political and operational risk environment, complemented by detailed sector insight


Our comprehensive assessment of the Netherlands' operating environment and the outlook for its leading sectors are formed by bringing together a wealth of data on global markets that affect the Netherlands, as well as the latest industry developments that could impact the Netherlands' industries. This unique integrated approach has given us an impeccable track-record for predicting important shifts in the markets, ensuring you’re aware of the latest market opportunities and risks in the Netherlands before your competitors.

Country Risk

Netherlands Country Risk

Netherlands Industry Coverage (10)


Netherlands Autos

BMI View:

BMI maintains a nominally bullish outlook on autos sales in the Netherlands in 2015, forecasting a 4.7% uptick in volumes over the full year. This comes on the back of several years of sustained declines in vehicle sales volumes and low base effects from 2014. BMI maintains a relatively bearish outlook on the country's economic growth prospects for 2015, and this is weighing on autos sales as consumers and businesses delay purchasing decisions.

Autos production in the Netherlands remains limited. Volumes are very low, and few companies maintain facilities in the country. Since 1999, vehicle production in the country declined almost every year up to 2011; we believe that the increase seen in 2013 (the latest figures available at the time of writing) and over our five-year forecast period to 2019 will be partly due to pent-up demand in the market, rather than a true recovery, and the...

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Food & Drink

Netherlands Food & Drink

BMI View:

BMI View: The Netherlands' economic growth will be supported by nascent recoveries in the domestic housing and labour markets. However, crushingly high levels of household indebtedness will prevent households harnessing growing eurozone growth momentum as much as other countries in the bloc. Falling oil prices will also increase household purchasing power. To that end, we have notched up our headline growth forecasts by 0.1 percentage points for both 2015 and 2016 to 1.4% and 1.6% respectively.

Headline Industry Data (local currency)

  • 2014 per capita food consumption growth: +1.42%; forecast compound annual growth rate (CAGR) 2014 to 2019 = +2.47%.

  • 2014 alcoholic drink volume sales growth: -0.44%; forecast CAGR 2014 to 2019 = -0.11%.

  • 2014...

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Freight Transport

Netherlands Freight Transport

BMI View:

Moderate Recovery In Prospect For 2015

BMI View: There will be something of a mixed bag in terms of the performance of the different freight modes in the Netherlands in 2015. On the one hand, year-on-year (y-o-y) tonnage growth will be healthy in the air freight sphere at 4.10%, while at the other end of the scale, y-o-y gains at the port of Rotterdam are anticipated to come in at 1.44%.

As for the wider economic picture, the Netherlands' relatively successful implementation of structural economic reforms, combined with a brightening growth outlook, will ensure that the country's fiscal dynamics remain among the healthiest in the eurozone over the coming years.

The European Central Bank launched its eagerly anticipated bid to provide a boost...

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Netherlands Insurance

BMI View:

BMI View: The insurance market in the Netherlands is extremely well developed, with a high volume of total premiums across life and non-life insurance giving it strong market penetration rate of 11.1% (premiums as a percentage of GDP) in 2015. The market is home to several major domestic insurance firms providing a comprehensive range of life and non-life insurance products and there is solid awareness of the benefits of insurance. Growth is however constrained by intense competition, the domestic economic downturn and by weakness throughout the wider eurozone which is undermining investor confidence.

The Netherlands insurance sector is already one of the most developed in Europe, and indeed globally, with a mature market boasting a number of leading insurance providers across the life and non life sub-sectors. The domestic economic recovery is starting to gain traction in 2015- GDP growth is...

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Medical Devices

Netherlands Medical Devices

BMI View:

BMI Industry View : The Dutch medical device market is expected to expand at a subdued rate over the next five years with a US dollar CAGR of 3.2% forecast for the 2013-2018 period. Despite downward pressure on costs, health expenditure is forecast to grow steadily due to the needs of the rising elderly population and this will be a primary driver in the market, although low economic growth and the austerity programme proposed by the new coalition government are likely to hold down growth rates. The operating environment within the healthcare sector is set to become even more competitive as a result of the government's latest reform programme, although this should favour more innovative forms of technology that offer cost saving features, particularly given the Health Ministry's proposals to...

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Netherlands Metals

BMI View:

BMI View:  After back-to-back years of volatility in the Dutch metals sector, 2014 looks to have laid the foundation for a prolonged period of stability in terms of both production and consumption. This positive momentum in the sector is set to continue through to the end of our forecast period in 2018. BMI expects steel to continue to dominate the country's metals industry; however, we see no significant new investment in the sub-sector over the coming years. Tata Steel, the largest producer in the country, is facing up to an increasingly hostile and competitive operating environment, with cheap steel and aluminium being exported from China. Nevertheless, opportunities remain in high-quality steel, of which the Netherlands is a key producer.

Long-Term Growth In Output

After posting a contraction in both production and...

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Netherlands Petrochemicals

BMI View:

Although there are considerable downside risks over the short term, Dutch petrochemicals still offer some distinct competitive advantages over the medium-to-long term. Dutch petrochemicals production has several distinct advantages that should help it maintain its regional position: high level of integration, economies of scale and diversity of the product slate, according to BMI's latest Netherlands Petrochemicals report.

In 2014, the Netherlands had capacities of 3.98mn tonnes per annum (tpa) of ethylene, 675,000tpa of polyvinyl chloride, 95,000tpa of polystyrene, 1.9mn tpa of polyethylene, 780,000tpa of polypropylene and 450,000tpa of polyethylene terephthalate.

The rubber and plastic production index recovered strength in 2014 as manufacturing returned to growth with an average of 1.6% growth in 9M 2014, compared to -1.0% in 2013. Chemicals grew 2.1% while rubber and plastic rose 3.7% on...

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Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare

Netherlands Pharmaceuticals & Healthcare

BMI View:

BMI View: The healthcare market in the Netherlands will continue to offer considerable commercial opportunities. As a part of the Health Insurance Act, implemented in 2006, private insurance for curative care and supplemental benefits is mandatory for the entire population. However, the Act is based on the principles of managed competition: insurers and providers of care compete on price and quality while the government has set certain rules to guarantee universal access to good-quality care - creating a highly competitive business environment and acting as a challenge to company revenue streams.

Headline Expenditure Projections

  • Pharmaceuticals: EUR5.92bn (USD7.93bn) in 2014 to EUR5.85bn (USD6.43bn) in 2015; -1.2% in local currency terms and -18.9% in US dollar terms. Forecast in line with last...

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Netherlands Renewables


Netherlands Telecommunications

BMI View:

BMI View: Although the Dutch market is very mature and past the saturation point in 2011, this market is surprisingly dynamic, with two new mobile operators launching their services in H214/H115. The roll out of 4G LTE services provides some uplift to the mobile and broadband markets, but essentially operators are now cannibalising an existing audience. This is evident as the MVNO's are eroding the market shares of traditional operators. In the wireline sector, convergence has been a key theme over the last year.

Key Data:

  • It appears that the decline of the mobile users decelerated in Q414 and the subscription base totalled 18.460mn, down 2.3% year-on-year (y-o-y), but up very slightly at 0.2% quarter-on-quarter (q-o-...

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Latest Netherlands Articles

  • The recent oil price rally has overshot the extent of the bullish shift in ...

  • We forecast global real GDP growth of 3.0% in 2015, a rise from the 2012-14...

  • Telenet's acquisition of BASE confirms BMI's view about the importance of c...

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