Sales in the Netherlands
Reaching the Consumers
- Consumer Behavior
- Dutch consumers tend to value quality to a high degree, they are willing to buy something when they see that the price relates to the quality. They usually do not favor Dutch products over their foreign counterparts. Dutch consumers are sensitive for advertisements and a good advertisement campaign is bound to a big effect on the sales.
- Consumer Profile and Purchasing Power
- The Dutch consumer has a lot of money to spend but will not spend it easily. By nature they tend to resist change and this also means that they prefer products that they already know over new products. Recently there has been a lot of publicity about the environment which has increased the willingness of Dutch consumers to buy environmental-friendly products.
- Main Advertising Agencies
Distributing a Product
- Evolution of the Sector
- In 2004, retail trade was valued at 79.2 billion euros, a decline of 2.1% over 2003.
- Market Shares
- Comparable to that of other European countries. Is dominated by big groups like
Ahold which controls 42% of the food distribution market, followed by
Laurus which holds 17% (the Laurus brand is on the verge of disappearing which is benefiting the French brand Casino which today owns 38.7% of Laurus). Despite the development of large supermarkets, Dutch consumers continue to prefer neighborhood stores which allows small supermarkets and specialized stores to retain a considerable share in the Dutch distribution market.
The discount market is also growing; increasing from 10% in 2003 to 13% in 2004.
In the non-food sector, international and Dutch brands co-exist and all of them are well established. In the textile sector there is C&A, Maxeda, and in the furnishing sector Blokker is a national brand.
- Organizations in the Retail Sector
Dutch Supermarket Association
Market Access Procedures
- International Conventions
- Member of
World Trade Organisation
Member of OECD
Party to the Kyoto Protocol
Party to the Washington Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora
Party to the Basel Convention on the Control of Transboundary Movements of Hazardous Wastes and Their Disposal
Party to the Montreal Protocol on Substances That Deplete the Ozone Layer
Wassenaar arrangement on export controls for conventional arms and dual-use goods and technologies
Party of the International Coffee Agreement 2001
- Main International Economic Cooperation
- Member of the European Union Custom Union and numbers of multilateral and bilateral agreements.
- Non Tariff Barriers
The Netherlands, member of the
European Union applies its rules. While the EU has a rather liberal foreign trade policy, there is a certain number of restrictions, especially on farm products, following the implementation of the
CAP (Common Agricultural Policy): the application of compensations on import and export of farm products, aimed at favouring the development of agriculture within the EU, implies a certain number of control and regulation systems for the goods entering the EU territory.
Moreover, for sanitary reasons, regarding Genetically Modified Organisms, their presence should be systematically specified on packaging. Beef cattle bred on hormones is also forbidden to import.
The BSE crisis ("mad cow disease") urged the European Authorities to strengthen the phytosanitary measures to make sure of the quality of meats entering and circulating in the EU territory. The principle of precaution is now widespread: in case of doubt, the import is prohibited until proof is made of the non-harmfullness of products.
- Customs Duties and Taxes on Imports
The Netherlands has (as a member of the Europian Union) one of the lowest average custom duties with 4.17%.
- Customs Classification
- Harmonized custom system.
- Import Procedures
Release for free circulation confers on non-Community goods the status of Community goods. Article 79 (2) Customs Code (CC) clarifies that release for free circulation entails: both the collection of import duties where goods are liable to them according to the Community Customs Tariff and no duty relief is applicable and the application of commercial policy measures (such as the presentation of an import authorisation for goods subject to quotas) and any other formalities laid down in respect of the importation of such goods (such as the presentation of a health certificate for certain animals).
Additional information about import procedures can be found on the European Commission website.
- Importing Samples
- Weapons, ammunition, protected species of flora and fauna and drugs.
- For Further Information
European Taxation and Customs
Dutch Custom Procedure
The Netherlands Foreign Trade Agency
Organizing Goods Transport
- Main Useful Means of Transport
Rotterdam is the first port of Europe and one of the most important in the world: in 1998, it handled 315 million tons of goods. This is set to reach an estimated 480 millions by 2020. The Netherlands have an internal network of waterways covering 5,046 km, which handle a considerable volume of goods. The other important port is
Amsterdam. In 1997 transport by inland waterway represented only 19% of the goods traffic on the domestic market as compared to 64% on the international market which demonstrates the enormous potential to be exploited at the national level. In general, the government's goal is to promote sea transport rather than road transport.
There are a few domestic lines because of the small size of the country. KLM covers a worldwide network with competitive prices.
The country's modern and vast road network. The road capacity sometimes remains insufficient given the traffic density, resulting in traffic jams. The Ministry in charge of Transport and traffic, Telecoms, and the management of Water and Aviation (Ministry of transport, Public Works and Water Management), has planned a certain number of investments for the improvement of road infrastructures, such as the "Bereikbaarheidsoffensief project". This project will make it possible for four big cities to be better served thanks to the introduction of toll roads, on a trial basis.
Snce 1985, while goods transport has decreased because of the competition with road transport. In 1993, railways transported 4.79 million tons of goods. The government is now planning to take certain measures for the creation of a fast rail link between the four big cities.
Port of Amsterdam
Port of Rotterdam
Ports of Zeeland
Amsterdam Schipol Airport
- Sea Transport Organizations
Dutch Martime Network Foundation
Maritime Research Institute Netherlands
- Road Transport Organizations
Identifying a Supplier
- Type of Production
- The industry is reponsible for 24% of the Dutch GDP. Industrial activity is predominantly in food processing, chemicals, petroleum refining, and electrical machinery. All of these industry are highly competitive.
- Business Directories
- Manufacturers Associations of the Main Industries
Dutch Potato Proccesing Association
Dutch Chemical Association
Association of Dutch Suppliers in the Oil and Gas Industry
- Trade Agencies and Their Representations Abroad
Dutch Chamber of Commerce
Dutch Ministry of Economic Affrairs
- Enterprises Federation
Small and Medium Enterprise Representative
Information for the Small and Medium sized companies
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