Number of Dutch entrepreneurs doubled

The number of independent entrepreneurs in the Netherlands has more than doubled to nearly 1.1 million in the past 25 years, that is excluding entrepreneurs in agriculture, according to Research Bureau EIM.

Approximately 12 percent of the working population is an entrepreneur, which makes the Netherlands leading in northern and Western Europe.

EIM expects the number of entrepreneurs will continue to rise in the coming years but at a slower pace. Particularly among women and ethnic minorities entrepreneurship will increase.

ICT and globalization stimulated growth for entrepreneurs. The Internet allows small companies to serve a bigger market and collaborate easier.

Due to economic crisis, the prospects for SMEs are less favorable. With unchanged policy the research agency estimates an annual growth of 1.75 percent for SMEs in the next five years.

Product and process innovations provide opportunities in the market and the trend towards sustainable production.

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