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The Netherlands traditionally has an international focus. Foreign business people and other visitors are received with hospitality and communication is rather problem-free, even if you do not speak any Dutch. Almost all Dutch people speak at least English and often one or two other foreign languages. This makes the Netherlands attractive to foreign businesses as a country to establish a subsidiary.
Furthermore, the Netherlands offers many favourable facilities to promote international business:
The Netherlands concluded unilateral tax treaties with a wide range of countries, ensuring favourable schemes preventing double taxation, whereas source tax on interest, royalties and dividends is often decreased to zero. Companies established in the Netherlands are eligible for application of these schemes. Additionally, the Netherlands of course gives access to the free single market of the EU.
The favourable holding scheme is very well-known. For example, for an American company aiming to serve the European market from various European countries, in terms of tax it is beneficial to establish the holding in the Netherlands. The Netherlands applies an exemption from Dutch tax to participations that applies to 100% of dividends and capital gains received. Due to its expansive network of treaties, the Dutch tax on dividend is often decreased to zero.
The Netherlands offers you easy access to all of Europe. Via inland waterways (from the ports of Rotterdam, Amsterdam and Groningen), by air (Schiphol Airport), by train or by truck, the Netherlands offers a seamless connection to the hinterland. The expansive Dutch transport sector flourishes. Did you know that 65% of all American companies with their own distribution centre in Europe have established it in the Netherlands?
In terms of employment conditions, the Netherlands offers a fairly high minimum number of days off for employees. However, do not let this hold you back! In terms of days off, the Netherlands is average within the EU while the labour productivity of Dutch employees is extraordinarily high.
The old Calvinist attitude of ‘work first, then fun’, and an interest in innovation and development make hiring Dutch staff attractive to businesses. After all, it is not the number of hours present that counts - it is about what gets done during that time!