Dutch companies spend slightly more on R&D

Dutch companies spend slightly more on R&D

Dutch companies spent more than 5 billion euro on R&D last year, i.e. 0.87 percent of the gross domestic product (GDP). Total R&D expenditure was marginally up on 2009. In the three preceding years, R&D expenditure declined annually. Relative to other countries, R&D spending in the Netherlands was relatively low, according to Statistics Netherlands.

Total R&D expenditure amounted to 10.8 billion euro or 1.83 percent of the GDP last year versus 10.4 billion euro in 2009. The Dutch government aims to raise the R&D-to-GDP ratio to 2.5 percent in 2020. This is below the level of the EU target, which was set at 3 percent for 2010.

Dutch private sector below EU average
Over the period 1995-2010, spending on R&D by Dutch companies was continually below the average across the EU 27. The gap has widened in the course of time. The share of companies in total R&D expenditure in the Netherlands dropped from 52 percent in 1995 to 47 percent in 2010. In the EU 27, the share dropped from 63 percent in 1995 to 62 percent in 2010. Hence, the percentage spent on R&D across the EU 27 was significantly higher than in the Netherlands.

Netherlands in the middle bracket
The Netherlands is in the low middle bracket in the group of 19 reference countries with respect to total R&D expenditure. This position is largely due to R&D expenditure by public research institutions and the sector higher education, which was above average relative to other countries. Private sector R&D expenditure was only lower in Spain, Italy, Hungary and Poland.

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