Skip to main content


Political system

The Netherlands is a parliamentary constitutional monarchy. The prime minister is the head of government and the monarch is the head of state. A council of ministers holds the executive power. The country is divided into 12 provinces and 342 municipalities. It is also divided into 21 water districts, governed by an executive board that has authority in matters of water management. 6 overseas countries and territories in the Caribbean are also part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. However, these territories are not part of the EU.

Trade and economy

The Netherlands ranks fourth in the European Union in terms of GDP per capita with €46 300, well above the EU average (€35 500). It accounts for 5.9% of the EU's total GDP.

(Source: Eurostat - figures for GDP per capita and GDP)

(Source: Eurostat - figures for exports and imports)

The Netherlands in the EU

Budgets and funding

How much does the Netherlands pay and receive from the EU?   

The EU budget is the tool to ensure that Europe remains a democratic, peaceful, prosperous and competitive force. The EU uses it to finance its priorities and big projects that most individual EU countries could not finance on their own.

The benefits of EU membership significantly exceed the size of the EU budget contributions and the examples are many. All Member States benefit from being part of the Single Market, a shared approach to the common challenges of migration, terrorism and climate change, and concrete gains like better transport infrastructure, modernised and digitalised public services and cutting-edge medical treatment.

How much each EU country pays into the EU budget is calculated fairly. The larger your country's economy, the more it pays – and vice versa.

The EU budget is not about giving and taking – it’s about collectively contributing to making Europe and the world a better place for us all.

EU budget spending and revenue per country and per year


EU-funded projects in the Netherlands

Money from the EU budget helps fund programmes and projects in all EU countries – for example to build roads, subsidise researchers and protect the environment.

Find out more about how the Netherlands benefits from EU funding and recovery funds in your country or region.