Security costs hundreds per person in the Netherlands

Security costs hundreds per person in the Netherlands

According to CBS, spending on crime fighting and prevention, corruption and harassment reached 13 billion euros in 2012, which is an average spend of 780 euros per person.

While that is an increase of three euros per person from 2011, spending has remained fairly stable for the last three years. From 2002 to 2009, however, spending rose from just over 500 euros per person to just the current level of just under 800 euros.

Security spending

Costs for security include the supply and use of goods and services used to prevent or punish crime, anti-social behaviour and degradation of neighbourhoods, or limiting their damage. It also includes spending on improving feelings of safety. It does not include, however, spending on anything aimed at traffic and physical safety, such as emergency and fire services.

The central Dutch government shoulders by far the largest part of the costs of security in the Netherlands, contributing 9,5 billion euros last year (73 per cent of the total). Within the government, the Ministry of Security and Justice has the greatest responsibility, as the police, prison services and much of the justice system come under its purview.

Outside the government, the private sector contributes 14 per cent of security costs, while households pay eight per cent, primarily through preventative measures in the home. The remaining five per cent is paid by local government.

Highest spend on prevention

Six billion euros, almost half the total 2012 spend, went to prevention, of which the Dutch police and security companies are the biggest providers.

Over 20 per cent goes to criminal investigations, conducted mainly by police. A further 18 per cent is spent by the prison services on carrying out sentences.

The remaining 14 per cent goes to prosecution, trials, victim support, legal aid, supports for suspects and perpetrators, and other activities.

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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