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Settling as an independent entrepreneur in the Netherlands

A point system applies to foreigners wishing to establish themselves independently in the Netherlands. If enough points are scored a residence permit will be issued. American and Japanese nationals can make a claim for a residence permit within existing friendship treaties.
 

The point system for independent entrepreneurs consists of three categories:

  • Personal experience
  • Business plan
  • Added value for the Netherlands

At least 30 points have to be reached for each category (from a possible 100 points per category). Elements which can contribute to a higher score include a well founded financial base; capital investment; higher education and experience. Previous experience with the Netherlands also adds points. A residence permit can also be issued, if for each of the two categories 'personal experience' and 'business plan' at least 45 points are reached.

The Ministry of Economic Affairs assesses the application and gives its decision via the IND (Immigration and Naturalisation Service). The application procedure can take up to three months.

There is a more favourable situation for American and Japanese entrepreneurs. On the basis of the Dutch American Friendship Treaty and the Japanese Trade Treaty the residency requirements are as follows:

  • Registration with the Chamber of Commerce
  • Capital investment of €4,500 for the business
  • Opening balance and financial prognosis prepared by an accountant with at least a BECONnumber.
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