(WIPO code: NL) (latest review October 2020)

by NLO (N.V. NEDERLANDSCH OCTROOIBUREAU), The Hague – Barend Bouma & Leon Olde Nordkamp

General Information


Total 41,526 sq. km; land (area excluding stretches of water broader than 6 meters): 33,883 sq. km.


17.4 million (estimated Oct. 2019).


Amsterdam, with approx. 854,047 inhabitants within city limits. (The Hague is the seat of the government.).


Dutch and Frisian.


Euro (EUR).

Principal Imports

potatoes, vegetables, fruit, processed products for human consumption, living livestock, meat, cereal products, cacao products, oil, fat, cars, car parts, machines, chemicals, metals, food, textile products, toys, shoes, electronics, cloths, fashion, diamonds, polymers, pharmaceutical products.

Principal agricultural and fishery products

potatoes, vegetables, fruit, processed meat, processed fish, processed vegetables (for human consumption), living livestock, meat, flowers, plants, dairy products, eggs.

Principal exports

potatoes, vegetables, fruit, processed meat, processed fish, processed vegetables (for human consumption), living livestock, meat, dairy products, eggs, machines and parts, natural gas, ornamental cultivation, high-quality plastics, metal products, petroleum products.

General Remarks

Nearly 67% of the country consists of cultivated land, about 8% is devoted to forestry, and about 4% is uncultivated. The Netherlands is one of the most commercial countries of the world. Industry is highly developed. There are iron works, lime kilns, brick and tile kilns, potato mills, strawboard factories, tobacco factories, cocoa, flour, margarine, and artificial fertilizer works, carpentry works, electric bulb works, radio works, motor-car works, plastic works, cement factories, cotton, weaving and spinning mills, artificial silk factories, show works, chemical industries, cigar and cigarette factories, rice mills, oil factories, paper mills, engine works, distilleries, breweries, shipyards, candle works, potteries, saw mills and sugar refineries.

The Netherlands, headed by a hereditary constitutional monarchy (King Willem-Alexander der Nederlanden), are a party to the Benelux Customs Union (with Belgium and Luxembourg), and to the European Union.

As of October 10, 2010, with the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles, the overseas part of the Netherlands is the BES Islands (consisting of the Caribbean islands Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, which are now considered “special municipalities” of the Netherlands; Aruba, Curaçao and Sint Maarten being autonomous States within the Kingdom of the Netherlands, each having its own independent Intellectual Property Office. The Dutch Patents Act 1995 also applies to Curaçao and Sint Maarten, with the exception of Chapter 7 relating to Supplementary Protection Certificates.


Patent Statistics 2015   2017 2018
National patent applications filed: 2,478 2,606 2,519
National patents granted: 1,377 2,056 2,010
EPO granted patents in which NL is designated: n.a. 101,563 124,216
EPO granted patents validated in NL: 19,065 23,816 28,650
Patents in force in NL: 164,186 188,893 213,408
Applications for Supplementary Protection Certificates (SPCs): 77 63 41
Supplementary Protection Certificates granted: 7 n.a. n.a.
PCT applications by Dutch applicants: n.a. n.a. n.a.
EP applications by Dutch applicants: n.a. n.a. n.a.
Depots of original topographies of semiconductor products: n.a. n.a. n.a.
Source: www.rvo.nl