Entrepreneurs are invaluable. They are the engine of the Dutch economy. We owe our jobs, prosperity and opportunities for development to a large extent to creative self-employed persons, innovative startups, proud family businesses, global companies and a large, varied and robust small and medium-sized company.
Space for entrepreneurs
Legislation and regulations are being modernized so that companies can better respond to social and technological changes with their services and products. Regulatory pressure and administrative burdens are limited, for example by expanding the current business effects test with an SME test.
The various inspections will cooperate better so that better enforcement is associated with fewer administrative and supervisory burdens. Appropriate rules and more space will be created for companies with social or societal goals while maintaining a level playing field. The possibilities for regional and sectoral pilot projects, legal experimental space, test locations (for example for drones) and rule-free zones will be increased. Minimum requirements and appropriate supervision apply.
In order to take advantage of regional opportunities, the national government seals ‘deals’ with decentralized authorities, in which the parties undertake to work together on new solutions.
In vocational education, professionals, technology and craft are given priority, revaluation and a new impulse. The Technology Pact and the Beta Technology Platform will be continued.
The cabinet invests 200 million euros a year in fundamental research. In addition, 200 million euros per year will become available for applied research. This includes an extra investment at large technological institutes that demonstrably meet market needs and public-private partnerships at universities and colleges with a focus on beta and technology.
Credit and banking sector
The cabinet is continuing the establishment of a Dutch financing and development institution, InvestNL, in accordance with the set-up that has already been started with three main objectives (see Parliamentary Paper 28165-nr266) and is making 2.5 billion euros available as equity.
Financial technological innovations (Fintech) contribute to innovation and competition in the financial sector. The entry of these innovative companies is simplified by introducing lighter banking and other licenses while ensuring sufficient protection of the customers.
Well-capitalized banks are crucial for lending. As soon as the stricter requirements of Basel IV come into force, the requirement for the leverage ratio is brought into line with European requirements.
A level playing field for entrepreneurs
An open economy is difficult to relate to the barriers that Dutch entrepreneurs too often encounter in other countries outside the European Union. This also applies to foreign companies that are (partly) state-owned or that benefit from state aid. The Netherlands wants to make agreements at European level and with third countries for a better balance.
To prevent improper and unwanted competition between governments and private parties, the general interest provision in the Market and Government Act is being tightened. For activities that are developed by governments and that are otherwise not or insufficiently offered by market parties, such as sports, culture, welfare and reintegration services, there remains a possibility to provide these by governments.
Additional franchise legislation will be introduced to strengthen the position of franchisees in the pre-competitive phase.
A competitive business climate
We want the Netherlands to be a country where it is attractive for companies to settle and from which Dutch companies can trade all over the world. The Netherlands benefits from this because these companies add employment, innovation and strength to our economy. Many people work at internationally operating companies and at companies that supply them. The Netherlands is an attractive country of residence for many internationally operating companies. Measures are needed to keep it that way in an increasingly globalizing world.