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How do Dutch SMEs fare in 2016?

The Dutch Committee for Entrepreneurship & Financing has published its annual report reviewing the state of small and medium-sized enterprises in the Netherlands. The report, entitled ‘Agile and robust in a new market dynamic: entrepreneurs and government in high gear’, describes SMEs as the job generators of the Netherlands.
Small and medium-sized enterprises account for three million full-time jobs in the Netherlands. That amounts to approximately 70% of total Dutch employment and more than 60% of overall added value. According to the report, entrepreneurs and firms are working hard to adapt to the regulations of the ‘new’ economy. Technology is evolving at an increasingly rapid pace; and, although this dynamic may translate to major opportunities for some, it likewise presents great challenges for others. Consequently, some firms are compelled to change direction or stop entirely, and, generally, the market environment is prone to fluctuating levels of growth and decline.
To be successful the Netherlands must acknowledge this market dynamic and create an environment in which it is more feasible for SMEs to quickly adapt to change. For this, the appropriate conditions should be established by engaging in the following activities:
-Promoting a labour market in line with new business dynamics.
-Strengthening the equity of SMEs and improving access to a more diverse range of financing instruments.
-Improving the quality of entrepreneurship.
-Expediting the adjustment of education to meet changing demands.
-Stimulating networking amongst entrepreneurs, and between entrepreneurs, research institutions, and regulators.
With an unmistakable sense of urgency, the report emphasises a need for a collaborative effort toward strengthening Dutch SMEs to better anticipate challenges arising from the new market dynamic.
Click here to download the full MKB Jaarbericht 2016 report (in Dutch). To learn more about the Dutch Committee for Entrepreneurship & Financing, visit the Staat van het MKB website.

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