Most provinces grew in 2014; Friesland, Groningen contracted

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The economy grew in 10 of the 12 Dutch provinces last year, according to Statistics Netherlands (CBS). Friesland and Groningen were the exceptions. 

Across all provinces, there was an average economic expansion of 0.9% in 2014.

The 7.3% economic shrinkage that Friesland and Groningen experienced was mainly driven by a contraction in natural gas production. Because 2014 was exceptionally warm, less gas was extracted in the nothernmost provinces. Gas production also experienced a drop due to the increasing threat of earthquakes associated with the extraction.

At 2.2%, Flevoland experienced the largest economic growth. This was mainly due to strong growth in the leased cars industry that is widely present in the region and improvements in the agricultural sector.

Other provinces with above-average growth were Brabant and Utrecht. Brabant grew specifically due to its machine industry. Utrecht benefited from a strong growth in the information and communications sector in its same-named capital city.

The Netherlands' four largest metropolises – Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht – all reported above-average growth. At 1.3%, Amsterdam had the lowest growth figure of the four due to a shrinkage of financial institutions during 2014.