19 February 2024, by Simone Jacobs

Fewer labour and knowledge migrants are choosing to move to the Netherlands for work, a new study has found. According to market researcher Intelligence Group, the negative attitude towards labour migration is one of the main reasons for this. This has also negatively impacted the business climate with more entrepreneurs considering leaving the country. 

The Netherlands becoming less attractive for labour migrants

Many internationals searching for work abroad are choosing other countries over the Netherlands, such as Germany and the UK, more frequently. The Intelligence Group reported that the reasons that labour and knowledge migrants have been choosing the Netherlands less often are because of politics, the housing market, rogue employment agencies and the increasing intolerance towards internationals. 

Some employers have expressed concern about the negative attitude towards migration as there is a labour market shortage, especially in technology and healthcare, and migrant workers are needed to tackle these challenges. The chip machine maker ASML has recently stated that they might move parts of their operations to other countries if there are insufficient workers to be found in the Netherlands.

Business climate in the Netherlands deteriorating

Expats aren’t the only ones that have concerns about the Netherlands. An annual survey conducted by VNO-NCW and MKB-Nederland on the business climate found that out of 1.600 participants, 44 percent of entrepreneurs did not find the Netherlands an attractive country to do business in and almost 20 percent had considered leaving the country altogether. Both these numbers have nearly doubled since the previous year.

Businesses have been most concerned about the lack of stability of the Dutch government, as well as the increasing regulatory burden, shortage of personnel and taxes. This has led to a decline in investments, as approximately 25 percent of entrepreneurs have decided not to invest in the Netherlands in the next year.

Thumb image credit: www.hollandfoto.net / Shutterstock.com

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