Netherlands

Recovery under way
The Dutch economy has gone through a long period of below-trend growth in the past five years. With improving cost competitiveness, stronger export market growth and repaired balance sheets, a recovery is now under way; it is projected to broaden in 2006-07. Headline inflation has increased due to rising energy prices, but core inflation is likely to remain moderate.
After having been subject to the EU’s excessive budget deficit procedure, the government has taken consolidation measures both on the expenditure and the revenue sides. In view of the expected expansion, the government should allow automatic fiscal stabilisers to fully operate on the upside. Moreover, measures to further relax strict employment protection legislation on regular contracts would increase resilience, while reforms aimed at increasing working time over the lifespan would help to strengthen labour supply.
Population (000s), 200416 275
Area (000 sq km)41
CurrencyEuro
GDP (Billion USD), 2004579.0
Life expectancy at birth (Women, Men), 2003 80.9, 76.2
Total labour force (000s), 20048 420
Government typeConstitutional Monarchy
Indicators% change unless otherwise indicated
200520062007
GDP growth0.72.22.5
Household savings ratio6.07.07.1
Consumer price index1.51.70.8
Short-term interest rate (%)2.22.22.9
Unemployment rate (%)6.25.95.0
General government financial balance (% GDP)-1.6-1.8-1.5
Current account balance (% GDP)5.86.88.0
Source: OECD© OECD Observer, No. 252/253, November 2005


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