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Netherlands, Economy

colonial trade, European economy, economic planning, European nations, national government

The Netherlands has played a special role in the European economy for many centuries. Since the 16th century, shipping, fishing, trade, and banking have been leading sectors of the Dutch economy, and trade with the country’s colonial empire was important in the 19th and the first half of the 20th centuries. Since the independence of Indonesia in the late 1940s, the Dutch economy has been redirected from colonial trade to that with European nations; a diversified manufacturing base was created as employment in agriculture fell; and the country became a major energy exporter as large deposits of natural gas were discovered. In all these changes the national government played a major role, particularly by its economic planning. The government’s influence is great even though most firms are privately owned, because it distributes nearly half the Dutch national income. Also important in the economic growth of The Netherlands are the activities of a number of large private firms.

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Article key phrases:

colonial trade, European economy, economic planning, European nations, national government, banking, economic growth, centuries, major role, century, fishing, Netherlands, half, agriculture, changes, employment, activities, shipping

 
 

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