Foreign investments in Netherlands clock record in 2014

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Foreign investments in the Dutch economy topped €3.2 billion last year, a record amount of money according to the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency (NFIA).

The agency, an operational unit of the ministries of Economic Affairs and Foreign Affairs, released its annual report today that states that in total 187 new investment projects were achieved including headquarters, manufacturing facilities, and data centers. These investments will lead to 6,304 extra jobs.

"Investors are rightly seeing many opportunities to invest in the Netherlands,” commented Minister of Economic Affairs Henk Kamp. “Our well-educated labor force, world class digital infrastructure, and the recovering economy work like a magnet for investors. The rest of the world is not standing still, however. It is important to continue to aim high in order to ensure our country remains attractive for new business."

“Trade and investment provide jobs in the Netherlands. That is evident again from these results,” said Minister Lilianne Ploumen. “Dutch embassies all over the world are therefore supporting the effort to attract international companies to the Netherlands. We want to convince more international startups that the Netherlands is the right place to innovate. Because that is where we still have a lot to win.”

The report says that through targeted acquisition, the NFIA attracted investments from stellar companies, like US booking site Expedia that expanded its service center in Amsterdam, adding 120 extra jobs. “Netflix also located its new European headquarters in our country. Furthermore, Google decided to build a 600-million-Euro data center in Eemshaven, in Groningen. And the Canadian company Northland Power is investing more than 1.6 billion Euros in Gemini, the offshore wind park 85 kilometers north of the Groningen coast. In Bergen op Zoom, American fashion giant American Eagle is establishing a large distribution center with employment for some 100 people. Additionally, the Spanish company Europastry is establishing a bakery in the city of Oldenzaal, creating 75 jobs,” the report states.

It says that the United States continues to lead, with American investors fueling growth with 65 projects and more than 2,300 jobs. China follows in second place with 28 projects and more than 500 jobs. South Korean investors attracted attention with 15 projects and 165 jobs. India had a substantial share as well, with 10 new projects leading to 225 jobs. In 2013, the foreign investment amount recorded by the NFIA was 1.7 billion Euros. “Still that year was a bumper year for employment caused by a number of large projects: as many as 8,500. In 2012, foreign investment projects supplied just over 5,000 jobs.”

The report said furthermore that as part of a 5-year plan, the NFIA and its regional partners will look to increase foreign investments in key sectors of chemicals, agrifood, high tech systems, life sciences & health and IT under the name ‘Invest in Holland’. NFIA will also aim to capitalize on established contacts in China and India. Moreover, the NFIA together with Dutch Embassies and Consulates will also start working with StartupDelta, the initiative launched by the ministry of Economic Affairs and headed by former EU Vice President Neelie Kroes. They will concentrate mainly on the US, the UK and Israel.