HSBC Navigator provides comprehensive insight into the now, next and how for business, representing the views of over 9,100 business decision-makers across 35 markets. This report gives an understanding of how businesses like yours can continue to grow now and in the future.

An eye firmly on the future

‘Holland’ is no more. The Netherlands’ business community has backed the move to cast off remaining references to the ancient name, emphasising its open, forward-looking mood1. The Dutch government is hailing a robust economy, with unspectacular but steady growth of 1.5% predicted for 20202. Overseas trade remains strong3 and UK investment in the Netherlands has soared in response to Brexit4

State of play

New markets help to boost confidence

The Dutch business perspective is in harmony with the positive economic outlook. More than three-quarters of businesses in the Netherlands expect to grow over the next year. In the next five years, Dutch companies are slightly more cautious than their peers: 77% expect growth, compared to a 79% average in Europe and globally. The outlook for international trade is strong, with 83% predicting growth. Only a third of Dutch companies are expecting their business to change totally or substantially in the next five years, compared to half globally and 41% in Europe. 

83 %

The outlook for international trade is strong, with 83% predicting growth

Key contributors to expectations of sales growth over the next year

New markets opening up – global
New markets opening up – Netherlands
Improvements in logistics and transportation – global
Improvements in logistics and transportation – Netherlands
Increasing interest in sustainability – global
Increasing interest in sustainability – Netherlands

  Global  Netherlands  
Transformative technologies in your sector 28% 24%  
Favourable political environment 20% 21%  

What you need to know

  1. 1

    High growth (15% or more) in the next year is predicted by more Dutch businesses (22%) than the European average (18%).

  2. 2

    Two in five businesses are more optimistic about growth than a year ago.

  3. 3

    Half of global businesses but just 36% of Dutch companies expect to go through radical change within five years.

What your business can do

  • Upgrade your tech. Digital investment is the most popular driver of a positive outlook for Dutch businesses.

  • Seek new markets. A growing number of Dutch companies are following this strategy.

  • Review your supply chain. Around a third of businesses see this as a way of reducing cost and getting closer to customers.