Within the Netherlands, most foreign organisations choose to set up and expand in the Amsterdam Area. According to the Investment Barometer report, more than a third of all foreign companies that come to the Netherlands choose to set up in Amsterdam. Over the past year, 126 new international companies established in the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area. The excellent telecommunications infrastructure, outstanding quality of life and the stable business environment are all factors that investors name as key factors, contributing to the overall attractiveness of the Netherlands as a business location.
Last year, the majority of new businesses came from North America, with a total of 67 new investment projects. Ernst & Young also recognises that the Netherlands is a very popular international location for data centres.
Stable business climate
The Netherlands profits from a stable and flexible business, political, financial and regulatory environment. It also offers intellectual property protection and quick, efficient and transparent permit procedures. As one of the leading European nations, the Netherlands attracts direct foreign investment and has run a sizeable current account surplus for years.
The Netherlands – and especially the Amsterdam Area – is extremely well connected, both geographically by air, road and shipping networks, and also digitally thanks to innovative projects such as the Amsterdam Internet Exchange (AMS-IX). The country has the highest penetration of household broadband connections in the world (source: OECD, 2012). Some 84% of households have broadband internet access.
Quality of life
Amsterdam traditionally scores highly on quality of life compared to other European capitals. In Mercer's Quality of Living Index 2012, Amsterdam was ranked 12th, matching its position of 2011 and outperforming European peers such as Brussels, Berlin, Paris and London.