Most of Dutch raw materials imported from Europe

Most of Dutch raw materials imported from Europe

The Netherlands obtains 68 percent of its raw materials from elsewhere. Two thirds of the raw materials come from European countries according to figures released by Statistics Netherlands.

The Netherlands imported 161 billion kilogrammes of raw materials for domestic consumption in 2010. These are primarily fossil fuels such as crude oil and natural gas, and to a lesser degree minerals (sand, gravel), biomass (wheat, soy beans) and metal ores. Imports provide 68 percent of the need for raw materials.

Crude oil is mainly used in refineries in the production of petrol and diesel. Wheat and soy beans are often used in fodder. The Dutch blast furnaces depend entirely on imports of iron ore. Domestic raw materials are mainly agricultural products such as potatoes, sugar beet and also natural gas, sand and clay.

Europe is the main provider of raw materials
Two thirds of the imports of raw materials come from European countries. Much of the fossil fuels such as crude oil come from Russia and Norway, sand and gravel from the neighbouring countries, grains from France. Metal ores and soy beans mainly come from Brazil.

Indirect dependence on raw materials
Besides raw materials the Netherlands also imports semi-manufactured goods and finished products. To make these products, foreign producers require raw materials. So the Netherlands is also indirectly dependent on the raw materials used abroad. These indirect imports of raw materials equal three times the Dutch imports of raw materials.

For metals they even equal nine times Dutch imports because much metal ore is requires for the imported metal containing products such as cars. Likewise oil and gas are used extensively in the products imported by the Netherlands, because energy is required in the production of nearly every kind of goods.

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