Based on the average exchange rate for 2021, the Netherlands uses the euro which appreciated by 5% against the US dollar since 2017 and strengthened by 3.9% from 2020 to 2021. The stronger European Union currency in 2021 made Dutch imports paid for in weaker US dollars in 2021 relatively less expensive when converted starting from euros.
Major Suppliers for Imports into the Netherlands
The latest available country-specific data shows that almost two-thirds (65.2%) of products imported by the Netherlands were furnished by exporters in: Germany (17.3% of the global total), mainland China (10.2%), Belgium (9.9%), United States of America (7.6%), France (3.5%), Russia (3.48%), Norway (2.9%), Italy (2.8%), Poland (2.1%), Spain (2%), Ireland (1.9%) and Sweden (1.6%).
From a continental perspective, almost three-fifths (59.4%) of the Netherlands’ total imports by value in 2021 were purchased from fellow European countries. Asian trading partners supplied another 24.8% of import demand from the Netherlands, while 8.9% worth originated from exporters in North America.
Smaller percentages originated from Latin America (3.7%) excluding Mexico plus the Caribbean, Africa (2.8%) and Oceania (under 0.5%) led by Australia and New Zealand.
Given Netherlands’ population of 17.5 million people, its total $620.8 billion in 2021 imports translates to roughly $35,500 in yearly product demand from every person in the key European Union country. That average dollar metric exceeds the average $34,100 per capital for 2020.
Netherlands Top 10 Imports
The following product groups represent the highest dollar value in Netherlands’ import purchases during 2021. Also shown is the percentage share each product category represents in terms of overall imports into Netherlands.
- Mineral fuels including oil: US$97.3 billion (15.7% of total imports)
- Electrical machinery, equipment: $79.9 billion (12.9%)
- Machinery including computers: $71.7 billion (11.6%)
- Optical, technical, medical apparatus: $31.4 billion (5.1%)
- Vehicles: $30.9 billion (5%)
- Pharmaceuticals: $25.5 billion (4.1%)
- Plastics, plastic articles: $20.8 billion (3.3%)
- Organic chemicals: $17 billion (2.7%)
- Other chemical goods: $16 billion (2.6%)
- Iron, steel: $13.3 billion (2.1%)
Netherlands’ top 10 imports accounted for about two-thirds (65%) of the overall value of its product purchases from other countries.
Imported mineral fuels including oil garnered the fastest-growing increase in value among the Netherlands’ top 10 import categories, up 77.2% from 2020 to 2021.
In second place for improving import purchases were the materials iron and steel, up 54.3%.
Miscellaneous chemical goods imported into the Netherlands increased in total cost by 46.2%.
Please note that the results listed above are at the 2-digit Harmonized Tariff System code level. Information presented under other virtual folder tabs is at the more granular 4-digit level.
Major Mineral Fuels Imported into the Netherlands
In 2021, Dutch importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of mineral fuels-related products.
- Crude oil: US$36.3 billion (up 65.2% from 2020)
- Processed petroleum oils: $25.8 billion (up 44.3%)
- Petroleum gases: $6.6 billion (up 298.9%)
- Coal tar oils (high temperature distillation): $5.7 billion (up 79.8%)
- Coal, solid fuels made from coal: $1.8 billion (up 144.6%)
- Petroleum oil residues: $486.9 million (up 58.4%)
- Petroleum jelly, mineral waxes: $271.2 million (up 81%)
- Peat: $168.5 million (up 55%)
- Tar pitch, coke: $135.5 million (up 77.9%)
- Asphalt/petroleum bitumen mixes: $59.6 million (up 39.3%)
Among these import subcategories, Dutch purchases of petroleum gases (up 298.9%), coal including solid fuels made from coal (up 144.6%) then petroleum jelly and mineral waxes (up 81%) grew at the fastest pace from 2020 to 2021.
These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of imported fossil fuel among Dutch businesses and consumers.
Major Electrical Items Imported into the Netherlands
In 2021, Dutch importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of electronic equipment including consumer electronics.
- Phone devices including smartphones: US$23.5 billion (up 3.7% from 2020)
- Integrated circuits/microassemblies: $14.9 billion (up 9.1%)
- Solar power diodes/semi-conductors: $4.8 billion (up 61.1%)
- TV receivers/monitors/projectors: $4.7 billion (up 26.1%)
- Electrical converters/power units: $4.2 billion (up 26.7%)
- Lower-voltage switches, fuses: $2.7 billion (up 21.7%)
- Insulated wire/cable: $2.6 billion (up 18.6%)
- Electric water heaters, hair dryers: $2.03 billion (up 30.1%)
- Electric storage batteries: $1.96 billion (up 22.1%)
- TV receiver/transmit/digital cameras: $1.7 billion (up 6.2%)
Among these import subcategories, Dutch purchases of solar power diodes and semi-conductors (up 61.1%), electric water heaters or hair dryers (up 30.1%) then electrical converters and power units (up 26.7%) grew at the fastest pace from 2020 to 2021.
These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of imported electronics among Dutch businesses and consumers.
Major Machinery Imported into the Netherlands Including Computers
In 2021, Dutch importers spent the most on the following 10 subcategories of machines including computers.
- Computers, optical readers: US$18.2 billion (up 11.3% from 2020)
- Printing machinery: $6.3 billion (up 2.5%)
- Machinery for making semi-conductors: $5.5 billion (up 20.8%)
- Computer parts, accessories: $3.8 billion (up 12.1%)
- Heavy machinery (bulldozers, excavators, road rollers): $2.4 billion (up 41.3%)
- Taps, valves, similar appliances: $2.2 billion (up 14.6%)
- Turbo-jets: $2.04 billion (down -8.3%)
- Machinery parts: $2.03 billion (up 25.2%)
- Liquid pumps and elevators: $1.9 billion (up 13.9%)
- Centrifuges, filters and purifiers: $1.8 billion (up 34.0%)
Among these import subcategories, Dutch purchases of heavy machinery such as bulldozers, excavators and road rollers (up 41.3%), centrifuges, filters and purifiers (up 34%) then machinery parts (up 25.2%) grew at the fastest pace from 2020 to 2021.
These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of imported machines among Dutch businesses and consumers.
Major Optical, Technical and Medical Items Imported into the Netherlands
In 2021, Dutch importers spent the most on the following subcategories of optical, technical and medical products.
- Electro-medical equipment (e.g. xrays): US$11.6 billion (up 19.9% from 2020)
- Orthopedic appliances: $7.8 billion (up 27.9%)
- Physical/chemical analysis tools: $2 billion (up 28.1%)
- Mechano-therapy appliances: $1.14 billion (up 6%)
- Other measuring/testing machines: $1.12 billion (up 32.2%)
- Lenses, prisms, mirrors: $1 billion (up 26.9%)
- X-ray equipment: $857.8 million (down -5.3%)
- Liquid/gas checking instruments: $787.5 million (up 18.2%)
- Regulate/control instruments: $724.1 million (up 32.7%)
- Optical fiber cables, sheets, plates: $677.8 million (up 24.1%)
Among these import subcategories, Dutch purchases of regulating and controlling instruments (up 32.7%), other measuring or testing machines (up 32.2%) then physical or chemical analysis tools (up 28.1%) grew at the fastest pace from 2020 to 2021.
These amounts and the percentage gains within parenthesis clearly show where the strongest demand lies for different types of imported optical, technical and medical products among Dutch businesses and consumers.
See also Netherlands Top 10 Exports, Netherlands Top 10 Major Export Companies and Netherlands Top Trading Partners
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