Netherlands in top 10 countries for doing business

Forbes, the American business magazine, has released its annual Best Countries for Business index, awarding the Netherlands the 10th spot.

The index examined 145 nations on 11 different factors, including innovation, taxes, corruption, technology, red tape, investor protection and stock market performance.

Forbes took its data from organisations such as the World Bank, World Economic Forum, Property Rights Alliance and Transparency International, which recently ranked the Netherlands eighth in its international corruption index.

According to their results, Ireland is the best country in the world for doing business, despite the difficulties it has faced through the economic crisis.

Second was New Zealand, which while it is the smallest economy in the top 10, it is one of the fastest growing. Third was Hong Kong, which is noted for its low tax regime.

The Netherlands' business environment

The Dutch economy is the sixth-largest in the euro-zone and Forbes highlighted its stable industrial relations, moderate unemployment and inflation, sizable trade surplus and its role as a major transportation hub.

The profile on the Dutch economy noted that the Netherlands had had 26 years of uninterrupted economic growth before 2009, when it contracted 3,5 per cent due to the economic crisis.

The report noted that the economy is still struggling to recover from increased expenditure from bank bailouts and the contraction caused by the crisis.

The Netherlands is still rated higher than surrounding economies, however, including Germany (24th), Belgium (13th), the UK (12th) and France (19th).

Earlier this year, another financial media outlet Bloomberg rated the Netherlands as the best country in Europe to do business. Last year, Forbes placed the Netherlands in 14th position.

Top 10 countries to do business

1. Ireland
2. New Zealand
3. Hong Kong
4. Denmark
5. Sweden
6. Finland
7. Singapore
8. Canada
9. Norway
10. Netherlands

For more information, see the full list.

Alexandra Gowling


Alexandra Gowling

Alexandra is an Australian citizen and an experienced expat, having spent (quite a bit of) time in Asia before coming to the Netherlands a year ago. She enjoys writing, reading...

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