Country Summary



The Dutch United Provinces declared their independence from Spain in 1581; during the 17th century, they became a leading seafaring and commercial power, with settlements and colonies around the world. After 18 years of French domination, the Netherlands regained its independence in 1813. In 1830, Belgium seceded and formed a separate kingdom.



total: 41,543 sq km
land: 33,893 sq km
water: 7,650 sq km


temperate; marine; cool summers and mild winters

Natural resources

natural gas, petroleum, peat, limestone, salt, sand and gravel, arable land

People and Society


17,463,930 (2023 est.)

Ethnic groups

Dutch 75.4%, EU (excluding Dutch) 6.4%, Turkish 2.4%, Moroccan 2.4%, Surinamese 2.1%, Indonesian 2%, other 9.3% (2021 est.)


Dutch (official); note - Frisian is an official language in Fryslan province; Frisian, Low Saxon, Limburgish, Romani, and Yiddish have protected status under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages; Dutch is the official language of the three special municipalities of the Caribbean Netherlands; English is a recognized regional language on Sint Eustatius and Saba; Papiamento is a recognized regional language on Bonaire


Roman Catholic 20.1%, Protestant 14.8% (includes Dutch Reformed, Protestant Church of The Netherlands, Calvinist), Muslim 5%, other 5.9% (includes Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish), none 54.1% (2019 est.)

Population growth rate

0.48% (2023 est.)


Government type

parliamentary constitutional monarchy; part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands


name: Amsterdam; note - The Hague is the seat of government

Executive branch

chief of state: King WILLEM-ALEXANDER (since 30 April 2013); Heir Apparent Princess CATHARINA-AMALIA (daughter of King WILLEM-ALEXANDER, born 7 December 2003)
head of government: Prime Minister Mark RUTTE (since 14 October 2010); Deputy Prime Ministers Sigrid KAAG and Wopke HOEKSTRA (since 10 January 2022), Carola SCHOUTEN (since 26 October 2017); note - Mark RUTTE's ruling coalition collapsed on 8 July 2023; he is serving as prime minister in a caretaker status until a new prime minister is named following the 22 November 2023

Legislative branch

description: bicameral States General or Staten Generaal consists of:
Senate or Eerste Kamer (75 seats; members indirectly elected by the country's 12 provincial council members by proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms)
House of Representatives or Tweede Kamer (150 seats; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by open-list proportional representation vote to serve up to 4-year terms)


Economic overview

high-income European economy; core EU member; chemical, oil, and machinery exporter; some age-based income inequality; substantial amount of independent contractor employees; manageable public debt; key international aid funder.

Real GDP (purchasing power parity)

$992.675 billion (2021 est.)
$946.637 billion (2020 est.)
$984.912 billion (2019 est.)

Real GDP per capita

$56,600 (2021 est.)
$54,300 (2020 est.)
$56,800 (2019 est.)

Agricultural products

milk, potatoes, sugar beets, pork, onions, wheat, poultry, tomatoes, carrots/turnips, beef


agroindustries, metal and engineering products, electrical machinery and equipment, chemicals, petroleum, construction, microelectronics, fishing


$839.6 billion (2021 est.)
$712.3 billion (2020 est.)
$751.2 billion (2019 est.)

Exports - partners

Germany 20%, Belgium 12%, United Kingdom 9%, France 7%, United States 5% (2019)

Exports - commodities

refined petroleum, broadcasting equipment, packaged medicines, photography equipment, computers (2021)


$735.7 billion (2021 est.)
$620.5 billion (2020 est.)
$662 billion (2019 est.)

Imports - partners

Germany 15%, China 11%, Belgium 9%, United States 8%, Russia 7%, United Kingdom 5% (2019)

Imports - commodities

crude petroleum, refined petroleum, broadcasting equipment, computers, cars (2019)

Exchange rates

euros (EUR) per US dollar -
Exchange rates:
0.845 (2021 est.)
0.876 (2020 est.)
0.893 (2019 est.)
0.847 (2018 est.)
0.885 (2017 est.)

Page last updated: Tuesday, February 27, 2024