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Germany vs. Netherlands

Introduction

GermanyNetherlands
Background

As Europe's largest economy and second most populous nation (after Russia), Germany is a key member of the continent's economic, political, and defense organizations. European power struggles immersed Germany in two devastating world wars in the first half of the 20th century and left the country occupied by the victorious Allied powers of the US, UK, France, and the Soviet Union in 1945. With the advent of the Cold War, two German states were formed in 1949: the western Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) and the eastern German Democratic Republic (GDR). The democratic FRG embedded itself in key western economic and security organizations, the EC (now the EU) and NATO, while the communist GDR was on the front line of the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact. The decline of the USSR and the end of the Cold War allowed for German reunification in 1990. Since then, Germany has expended considerable funds to bring eastern productivity and wages up to western standards. In January 1999, Germany and 10 other EU countries introduced a common European exchange currency, the euro.

The Dutch United Provinces declared their independence from Spain in 1579; during the 17th century, they became a leading seafaring and commercial power, with settlements and colonies around the world. After a 20-year French occupation, a Kingdom of the Netherlands was formed in 1815. In 1830, Belgium seceded and formed a separate kingdom. The Netherlands remained neutral in World War I, but suffered German invasion and occupation in World War II. A modern, industrialized nation, the Netherlands is also a large exporter of agricultural products. The country was a founding member of NATO and the EEC (now the EU) and participated in the introduction of the euro in 1999. In October 2010, the former Netherlands Antilles was dissolved and the three smallest islands - Bonaire, Sint Eustatius, and Saba - became special municipalities in the Netherlands administrative structure. The larger islands of Sint Maarten and Curacao joined the Netherlands and Aruba as constituent countries forming the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

In February 2018, the Sint Eustatius island council (governing body) was dissolved and replaced by a government commissioner to restore the integrity of public administration. According to the Dutch Government, the intervention will be as "short as possible and as long as needed."

Geography

GermanyNetherlands
LocationCentral Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and the North Sea, between the Netherlands and Poland, south of DenmarkWestern Europe, bordering the North Sea, between Belgium and Germany
Geographic coordinates51 00 N, 9 00 E52 31 N, 5 46 E
Map referencesEuropeEurope
Areatotal: 357,022 sq km

land: 348,672 sq km

water: 8,350 sq km
total: 41,543 sq km

land: 33,893 sq km

water: 7,650 sq km
Area - comparativethree times the size of Pennsylvania; slightly smaller than Montanaslightly less than twice the size of New Jersey
Land boundariestotal: 3,694 km

border countries (9): Austria 801 km, Belgium 133 km, Czechia 704 km, Denmark 140 km, France 418 km, Luxembourg 128 km, Netherlands 575 km, Poland 447 km, Switzerland 348 km
total: 1,053 km

border countries (2): Belgium 478 km, Germany 575 km
Coastline2,389 km451 km
Maritime claimsterritorial sea: 12 nm

exclusive economic zone: 200 nm

continental shelf: 200-m depth or to the depth of exploitation
territorial sea: 12 nm

contiguous zone: 24 nm

exclusive fishing zone: 200 nm
Climatetemperate and marine; cool, cloudy, wet winters and summers; occasional warm mountain (foehn) windtemperate; marine; cool summers and mild winters
Terrainlowlands in north, uplands in center, Bavarian Alps in southmostly coastal lowland and reclaimed land (polders); some hills in southeast
Elevation extremeshighest point: Zugspitze 2,963 m

lowest point: Neuendorf bei Wilster -3.5 m

mean elevation: 263 m
highest point: Mount Scenery (on the island of Saba in the Caribbean, now considered an integral part of the Netherlands following the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles) 862 m

lowest point: Zuidplaspolder -7 m

mean elevation: 30 m

note: the highest point on continental Netherlands is Vaalserberg at 322 m
Natural resourcescoal, lignite, natural gas, iron ore, copper, nickel, uranium, potash, salt, construction materials, timber, arable landnatural gas, petroleum, peat, limestone, salt, sand and gravel, arable land
Land useagricultural land: 48% (2018 est.)

arable land: 34.1% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 0.6% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 13.3% (2018 est.)

forest: 31.8% (2018 est.)

other: 20.2% (2018 est.)
agricultural land: 55.1% (2018 est.)

arable land: 29.8% (2018 est.)

permanent crops: 1.1% (2018 est.)

permanent pasture: 24.2% (2018 est.)

forest: 10.8% (2018 est.)

other: 34.1% (2018 est.)
Irrigated land6,500 sq km (2012)4,860 sq km (2012)
Natural hazardsflooding

flooding

volcanism: Mount Scenery (887 m), located on the island of Saba in the Caribbean, last erupted in 1640;; Round Hill (601 m), a dormant volcano also known as The Quill, is located on the island of St. Eustatius in the Caribbean;; these islands are at the northern end of the volcanic island arc of the Lesser Antilles that extends south to Grenada

Environment - current issuesemissions from coal-burning utilities and industries contribute to air pollution; acid rain, resulting from sulfur dioxide emissions, is damaging forests; pollution in the Baltic Sea from raw sewage and industrial effluents from rivers in eastern Germany; hazardous waste disposal; government established a mechanism for ending the use of nuclear power by 2022; government working to meet EU commitment to identify nature preservation areas in line with the EU's Flora, Fauna, and Habitat directivewater and air pollution are significant environmental problems; pollution of the country's rivers from industrial and agricultural chemicals, including heavy metals, organic compounds, nitrates, and phosphates; air pollution from vehicles and refining activities
Environment - international agreementsparty to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Heavy Metals, Air Pollution-Multi-effect Protocol, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protection, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Seals, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Marine Dumping-London Protocol, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 2006, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
party to: Air Pollution, Air Pollution-Heavy Metals, Air Pollution-Multi-effect Protocol, Air Pollution-Nitrogen Oxides, Air Pollution-Persistent Organic Pollutants, Air Pollution-Sulphur 85, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Air Pollution-Volatile Organic Compounds, Antarctic-Environmental Protection, Antarctic-Marine Living Resources, Antarctic Treaty, Biodiversity, Climate Change, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Climate Change-Paris Agreement, Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban, Desertification, Endangered Species, Environmental Modification, Hazardous Wastes, Law of the Sea, Marine Dumping-London Convention, Marine Dumping-London Protocol, Marine Life Conservation, Nuclear Test Ban, Ozone Layer Protection, Ship Pollution, Tropical Timber 2006, Wetlands, Whaling

signed, but not ratified: none of the selected agreements
Geography - notestrategic location on North European Plain and along the entrance to the Baltic Sea; most major rivers in Germany - the Rhine, Weser, Oder, Elbe - flow northward; the Danube, which originates in the Black Forest, flows eastwardlocated at mouths of three major European rivers (Rhine, Maas or Meuse, and Schelde); about a quarter of the country lies below sea level and only about half of the land exceeds one meter above sea level
Total renewable water resources154 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)91 billion cubic meters (2017 est.)
Population distributionmost populous country in Europe; a fairly even distribution throughout most of the country, with urban areas attracting larger and denser populations, particularly in the far western part of the industrial state of North Rhine-Westphaliaan area known as the Randstad, anchored by the cities of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, the Hague, and Utrecht, is the most densely populated region; the north tends to be less dense, though sizeable communities can be found throughout the entire country

Demographics

GermanyNetherlands
Population79,903,481 (July 2021 est.)17,337,403 (July 2021 est.)
Age structure0-14 years: 12.89% (male 5,302,850/female 5,025,863)

15-24 years: 9.81% (male 4,012,412/female 3,854,471)

25-54 years: 38.58% (male 15,553,328/female 15,370,417)

55-64 years: 15.74% (male 6,297,886/female 6,316,024)

65 years and over: 22.99% (male 8,148,873/female 10,277,538) (2020 est.)
0-14 years: 16.11% (male 1,425,547/female 1,358,894)

15-24 years: 11.91% (male 1,049,000/female 1,008,763)

25-54 years: 38.47% (male 3,334,064/female 3,313,238)

55-64 years: 13.69% (male 1,177,657/female 1,188,613)

65 years and over: 19.82% (male 1,558,241/female 1,866,380) (2020 est.)
Median agetotal: 47.8 years

male: 46.5 years

female: 49.1 years (2020 est.)
total: 42.8 years

male: 41.6 years

female: 44 years (2020 est.)
Population growth rate-0.21% (2021 est.)0.37% (2021 est.)
Birth rate8.63 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)10.98 births/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Death rate12.22 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)9.22 deaths/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Net migration rate1.5 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)1.9 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2021 est.)
Sex ratioat birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.06 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 1.01 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 1 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.79 male(s)/female

total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
at birth: 1.05 male(s)/female

0-14 years: 1.05 male(s)/female

15-24 years: 1.04 male(s)/female

25-54 years: 1.01 male(s)/female

55-64 years: 0.99 male(s)/female

65 years and over: 0.83 male(s)/female

total population: 0.98 male(s)/female (2020 est.)
Infant mortality ratetotal: 3.24 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 3.61 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 2.84 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)
total: 3.45 deaths/1,000 live births

male: 3.82 deaths/1,000 live births

female: 3.06 deaths/1,000 live births (2021 est.)
Life expectancy at birthtotal population: 81.3 years

male: 78.93 years

female: 83.8 years (2021 est.)
total population: 81.95 years

male: 79.72 years

female: 84.3 years (2021 est.)
Total fertility rate1.48 children born/woman (2021 est.)1.78 children born/woman (2021 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate0.1% (2020 est.)0.2% (2020 est.)
Nationalitynoun: German(s)

adjective: German
noun: Dutchman(men), Dutchwoman(women)

adjective: Dutch
Ethnic groupsGerman 86.3%, Turkish 1.8%, Polish 1%, Syrian 1%, Romanian 1%, other/stateless/unspecified 8.9% (2020 est.)

note:  data represent population by nationality
Dutch 76.9%, EU 6.4%, Turkish 2.4%, Moroccan 2.3%, Indonesian 2.1%, German 2.1%, Surinamese 2%, Polish 1%, other 4.8% (2018 est.)
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS93,000 (2020 est.)

note: estimate does not include children
24,000 (2020 est.)

note: estimate does not include children
ReligionsRoman Catholic 27.1%, Protestant 24.9%, Muslim 5.2%, Orthodox 2%, other Christian 1%, other 1%, none 38.8% (2019 est.)Roman Catholic 23.6%, Protestant 14.9% (includes Dutch Reformed 6.4%, Protestant Church of The Netherlands 5.6%, Calvinist 2.9%), Muslim 5.1%, other 5.6% (includes Hindu, Buddhist, Jewish), none 50.7% (2017 est.)
HIV/AIDS - deaths<500 (2020 est.)

note: estimate does not include children
<100 (2020 est.)

note: estimate does not include children
LanguagesGerman (official); note - Danish, Frisian, Sorbian, and Romani are official minority languages; Low German, Danish, North Frisian, Sater Frisian, Lower Sorbian, Upper Sorbian, and Romani are recognized as regional languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages

major-language sample(s):
Das World Factbook, die unverzichtbare Quelle für grundlegende Informationen. (German)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.
Dutch (official); note - Frisian is an official language in Fryslan province; Frisian, Low Saxon, Limburgish, Romani, and Yiddish have protected status under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages; Dutch is the official language of the three special municipalities of the Caribbean Netherlands; English is a recognized regional language on Sint Eustatius and Saba; Papiamento is a recognized regional language on Bonaire

major-language sample(s):
Het Wereld Feitenboek, een omnisbare bron van informatie. (Dutch)

The World Factbook, the indispensable source for basic information.
School life expectancy (primary to tertiary education)total: 17 years

male: 17 years

female: 17 years (2018)
total: 19 years

male: 18 years

female: 19 years (2018)
Education expenditures4.9% of GDP (2017)5.2% of GDP (2017)
Urbanizationurban population: 77.5% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 0.13% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)
urban population: 92.6% of total population (2021)

rate of urbanization: 0.59% annual rate of change (2020-25 est.)
Drinking water sourceimproved: urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved: urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved: urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
Sanitation facility accessimproved: urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved: urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
improved: urban: 100% of population

rural: 100% of population

total: 100% of population

unimproved: urban: 0% of population

rural: 0% of population

total: 0% of population (2017 est.)
Major cities - population3.567 million BERLIN (capital), 1.789 million Hamburg, 1.553 million Munich, 1.129 million Cologne, 785,000 Frankfurt (2021)1.158 million AMSTERDAM (capital), 1.012 million Rotterdam (2021)
Maternal mortality rate7 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)5 deaths/100,000 live births (2017 est.)
Health expenditures11.4% (2018)10% (2018)
Physicians density4.25 physicians/1,000 population (2017)3.61 physicians/1,000 population (2017)
Hospital bed density8 beds/1,000 population (2017)3.3 beds/1,000 population (2017)
Obesity - adult prevalence rate22.3% (2016)20.4% (2016)
Mother's mean age at first birth29.8 years (2019 est.)30.1 years (2019 est.)
Contraceptive prevalence rate67% (2018)

note: percent of women aged 18-49
73% (2013)

note: percent of women aged 18-45
Dependency ratiostotal dependency ratio: 55.4

youth dependency ratio: 21.7

elderly dependency ratio: 33.7

potential support ratio: 3 (2020 est.)
total dependency ratio: 55.6

youth dependency ratio: 24.4

elderly dependency ratio: 31.2

potential support ratio: 3.2 (2020 est.)

Government

GermanyNetherlands
Country nameconventional long form: Federal Republic of Germany

conventional short form: Germany

local long form: Bundesrepublik Deutschland

local short form: Deutschland

former: German Reich

etymology: the Gauls (Celts) of Western Europe may have referred to the newly arriving Germanic tribes who settled in neighboring areas east of the Rhine during the first centuries B.C. as "Germani," a term the Romans adopted as "Germania"; the native designation "Deutsch" comes from the Old High German "diutisc" meaning "of the people"
conventional long form: Kingdom of the Netherlands

conventional short form: Netherlands

local long form: Koninkrijk der Nederlanden

local short form: Nederland

abbreviation: NL

etymology: the country name literally means "the lowlands" and refers to the geographic features of the land being both flat and down river from higher areas (i.e., at the estuaries of the Scheldt, Meuse, and Rhine Rivers; only about half of the Netherlands is more than 1 meter above sea level)
Government typefederal parliamentary republicparliamentary constitutional monarchy; part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands
Capitalname: Berlin

geographic coordinates: 52 31 N, 13 24 E

time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

etymology: the origin of the name is unclear but may be related to the old West Slavic (Polabian) word "berl" or "birl," meaning "swamp"
name: Amsterdam; note - The Hague is the seat of government

geographic coordinates: 52 21 N, 4 55 E

time difference: UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

note: time descriptions apply to the continental Netherlands only, for the constituent countries in the Caribbean, the time difference is UTC-4

etymology: the original Dutch name, Amstellerdam, meaning "a dam on the Amstel River," dates to the 13th century; over time the name simplified to Amsterdam
Administrative divisions16 states (Laender, singular - Land); Baden-Wuerttemberg, Bayern (Bavaria), Berlin, Brandenburg, Bremen, Hamburg, Hessen (Hesse), Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania), Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony), Nordrhein-Westfalen (North Rhine-Westphalia), Rheinland-Pfalz (Rhineland-Palatinate), Saarland, Sachsen (Saxony), Sachsen-Anhalt (Saxony-Anhalt), Schleswig-Holstein, Thueringen (Thuringia); note - Bayern, Sachsen, and Thueringen refer to themselves as free states (Freistaaten, singular - Freistaat), while Bremen calls itself a Free Hanseatic City (Freie Hansestadt) and Hamburg considers itself a Free and Hanseatic City (Freie und Hansestadt)12 provinces (provincies, singular - provincie), 3 public entities* (openbare lichamen, singular - openbaar lichaam (Dutch); entidatnan publiko, singular - entidat publiko (Papiamento)); Bonaire*, Drenthe, Flevoland, Fryslan (Friesland), Gelderland, Groningen, Limburg, Noord-Brabant (North Brabant), Noord-Holland (North Holland), Overijssel, Saba*, Sint Eustatius*, Utrecht, Zeeland (Zealand), Zuid-Holland (South Holland)

note 1: the Netherlands is one of four constituent countries of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; the other three, Aruba, Curacao, and Sint Maarten, are all islands in the Caribbean; while all four parts are considered equal partners, in practice, most of the Kingdom's affairs are administered by the Netherlands, which makes up about 98% of the Kingdom's total land area and population

note 2: although Bonaire, Saba, and Sint Eustatius are officially incorporated into the country of the Netherlands under the broad designation of "public entities," Dutch Government sources regularly apply to them the more descriptive term of "special municipalities"; Bonaire, Saba, and Sint Eustatius are collectively referred to as the Caribbean Netherlands
Independence18 January 1871 (establishment of the German Empire); divided into four zones of occupation (UK, US, USSR, and France) in 1945 following World War II; Federal Republic of Germany (FRG or West Germany) proclaimed on 23 May 1949 and included the former UK, US, and French zones; German Democratic Republic (GDR or East Germany) proclaimed on 7 October 1949 and included the former USSR zone; West Germany and East Germany unified on 3 October 1990; all four powers formally relinquished rights on 15 March 1991; notable earlier dates: 10 August 843 (Eastern Francia established from the division of the Carolingian Empire); 2 February 962 (crowning of OTTO I, recognized as the first Holy Roman Emperor)23 January 1579 (the northern provinces of the Low Countries conclude the Union of Utrecht breaking with Spain; on 26 July 1581, they formally declared their independence with an Act of Abjuration; however, it was not until 30 January 1648 and the Peace of Westphalia that Spain recognized this independence)
National holidayGerman Unity Day, 3 October (1990)King's Day (birthday of King WILLEM-ALEXANDER), 27 April (1967); note - King's or Queen's Day are observed on the ruling monarch's birthday; currently celebrated on 26 April if 27 April is a Sunday
Constitutionhistory: previous 1919 (Weimar Constitution); latest drafted 10-23 August 1948, approved 12 May 1949, promulgated 23 May 1949, entered into force 24 May 1949

amendments: proposed by Parliament; passage and enactment into law require two-thirds majority vote by both the Bundesrat (upper house) and the Bundestag (lower house) of Parliament; articles including those on basic human rights and freedoms cannot be amended; amended many times, last in 2020; note - in early 2021, the German federal government introduced a bill to incorporate children’s rights into the constitution
history: many previous to adoption of the "Basic Law of the Kingdom of the Netherlands" on 24 August 1815; revised 8 times, the latest in 1983

amendments: proposed as an Act of Parliament by or on behalf of the king or by the Second Chamber of the States General; the Second Chamber is dissolved after its first reading of the Act; passage requires a second reading by both the First Chamber and the newly elected Second Chamber, followed by at least two-thirds majority vote of both chambers, and ratification by the king; amended many times, last in 2018
Legal systemcivil law systemcivil law system based on the French system; constitution does not permit judicial review of acts of the States General
Suffrage18 years of age; universal; age 16 for some state and municipal elections18 years of age; universal
Executive branchchief of state: President Frank-Walter STEINMEIER (since 19 March 2017)

head of government: Chancellor Angela MERKEL (since 22 November 2005)

cabinet: Cabinet or Bundesminister (Federal Ministers) recommended by the chancellor, appointed by the president

elections/appointments: president indirectly elected by a Federal Convention consisting of all members of the Federal Parliament (Bundestag) and an equivalent number of delegates indirectly elected by the state parliaments; president serves a 5-year term (eligible for a second term); election last held on 12 February 2017 (next to be held in February 2022); following the most recent Federal Parliament election, the party or coalition with the most representatives usually elects the chancellor (Angela MERKEL since 2005) and appointed by the president to serve a renewable 4-year term; Federal Parliament vote for chancellor last held on 14 March 2018 (next to be held after the Bundestag elections in 2021)

election results: Frank-Walter STEINMEIER elected president; Federal Convention vote count - Frank-Walter STEINMEIER (SPD) 931, Christopher BUTTERWEGGE (The Left) 128, Albrecht GLASER (Alternative for Germany AfD) 42, Alexander HOLD (BVB/FW) 25, Engelbert SONNEBORN (Pirates) 10; Angela MERKEL (CDU) reelected chancellor; Federal Parliament vote - 364 to 315
chief of state: King WILLEM-ALEXANDER (since 30 April 2013); Heir Apparent Princess Catharina-Amalia (daughter of King WILLEM-ALEXANDER, born 7 December 2003)

head of government: Prime Minister (vacant); note - Prime Minister Mark RUTTE resigned on 15 January 2021; Deputy Prime Ministers (since 26 October 2017) Hugo DE JONGE, Karin Kajsa OLLONGREN, and Carola SCHOUTEN (since 26 October 2017); note - Mark RUTTE heads his third cabinet put in place since 26 October 2017

cabinet: Council of Ministers appointed by the monarch

elections/appointments: the monarchy is hereditary; following Second Chamber elections, the leader of the majority party or majority coalition is usually appointed prime minister by the monarch; deputy prime ministers are appointed by the monarch
Legislative branchdescription: bicameral Parliament or Parlament consists of:
Federal Council or Bundesrat (69 seats; members appointed by each of the 16 state governments)
Federal Diet or Bundestag (709 seats - total seats can vary each electoral term; approximately one-half of members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote and approximately one-half directly elected in single-seat constituencies by simple majority vote; members serve 4-year terms)

elections:
Bundesrat - none; composition is determined by the composition of the state-level governments; the composition of the Bundesrat has the potential to change any time one of the 16 states holds an election
Bundestag - last held on 24 September 2017 (next to be held in 2021 at the latest); most postwar German governments have been coalitions

election results:
Bundesrat - composition - men 50, women 19, percent of women 27.5%
Bundestag - percent of vote by party - CDU/CSU 33%, SPD 20.5%, AfD 12.6%, FDP 10.7%, The Left 9.2%, Alliance '90/Greens 8.9%, other 5%; seats by party - CDU/CSU 246, SPD 152, AfD 91, FDP 80, The Left 69, Alliance '90/Greens 67; composition - men 490, women 219, percent of women 30.5%; note - total Parliament percent of women 30.5%
description: bicameral States General or Staten Generaal consists of:
First Chamber or Eerste Kamer (75 seats; members indirectly elected by the country's 12 provincial council members by proportional representation vote; members serve 4-year terms)
Second Chamber or Tweede Kamer (150 seats; members directly elected in multi-seat constituencies by proportional representation vote to serve up to 4-year terms)

elections:
First Chamber - last held on 27 May 2019 (next to be held on NA May 2023)
Second Chamber - last held on 15 March 2017 (next to be held on 17 March 2021)

election results:
First Chamber - percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - FvD 12, VVD 12, CDA 9, GL 8, D66 7, MvdA 6, PVV 5, SP 4, CU 4, other 8; composition - men 49, women 26, percent of women 34.7%
Second Chamber - percent of vote by party - VVD 21.3%, PVV 13.1%, CDA 12.4%, D66 12.2%, GL 9.1%, SP 9.1%, PvdA 5.7%, CU 3.4%, PvdD 3.2%, 50 Plus 3.1%, other 7.4%; seats by party - VVD 33, PVV 20, CDA 19, D66 19, GL 14, SP 14, PvdA 9, CU 5, PvdD 5, 50 Plus 4, other 8; composition - men 96, women 54, percent of women 36%; note - total States General percent of women 35.6%
Judicial branchhighest courts: Federal Court of Justice (court consists of 127 judges, including the court president, vice presidents, presiding judges, other judges and organized into 25 Senates subdivided into 12 civil panels, 5 criminal panels, and 8 special panels); Federal Constitutional Court or Bundesverfassungsgericht (consists of 2 Senates each subdivided into 3 chambers, each with a chairman and 8 members)

judge selection and term of office: Federal Court of Justice judges selected by the Judges Election Committee, which consists of the Secretaries of Justice from each of the 16 federated states and 16 members appointed by the Federal Parliament; judges appointed by the president; judges serve until mandatory retirement at age 65; Federal Constitutional Court judges - one-half elected by the House of Representatives and one-half by the Senate; judges appointed for 12-year terms with mandatory retirement at age 68

subordinate courts: Federal Administrative Court; Federal Finance Court; Federal Labor Court; Federal Social Court; each of the 16 federated states or Land has its own constitutional court and a hierarchy of ordinary (civil, criminal, family) and specialized (administrative, finance, labor, social) courts; two English-speaking commercial courts opened in late 2020 in the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg - English-speaking Stuttgart Commercial Court and English-speaking Mannheim Commercial Court
highest courts: Supreme Court or Hoge Raad (consists of 41 judges: the president, 6 vice presidents, 31 justices or raadsheren, and 3 justices in exceptional service, referred to as buitengewone dienst); the court is divided into criminal, civil, tax, and ombuds chambers

judge selection and term of office: justices appointed by the monarch from a list provided by the Second Chamber of the States General; justices appointed for life or until mandatory retirement at age 70

subordinate courts: courts of appeal; district courts, each with up to 5 subdistrict courts; Netherlands Commercial Court
Political parties and leadersAlliance '90/Greens [Annalena BAERBOCK and Robert HABECK]
Alternative for Germany or AfD [Alexander GAULAND - Honorary President, Joerg MEUTHEN and Tino CHRUPALLA]
Christian Democratic Union or CDU [Armin LASCHET]
Christian Social Union or CSU [Markus SOEDER]
Free Democratic Party or FDP [Christian LINDNER]
The Left or Die Linke [Janine WISSLER and Susanne HENNING-WELLSOW]
Social Democratic Party or SPD [Saskia ESKEN and Norbert WALTER-BORJANS]
Christian Democratic Appeal or CDA [Sybrand VAN HAERSMA BUMA]
Christian Union or CU [Gert-Jan SEGERS]
Democrats 66 or D66 [Rob JETTEN]
Denk [Tunahan KUZU]
50 Plus [Henk KROL]
Forum for Democracy or FvD (vacant)
Green Left or GL [Jesse KLAVER]
Labor Party or PvdA [Lodewijk ASSCHER]
Party for Freedom or PVV [Geert WILDERS]
Party for the Animals or PvdD [Marianne THIEME]
People's Party for Freedom and Democracy or VVD [Mark RUTTE]
Reformed Political Party or SGP [Kees VAN DER STAAIJ]
Socialist Party or SP [Emile ROEMER]
plus a few minor parties
International organization participationADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Arctic Council (observer), Australia Group, BIS, BSEC (observer), CBSS, CD, CDB, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EITI (implementing country), EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, FATF, G-5, G-7, G-8, G-10, G-20, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINURSO, MINUSMA, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Pacific Alliance (observer), Paris Club, PCA, Schengen Convention, SELEC (observer), SICA (observer), UN, UNAMID, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNIFIL, UNMISS, UNRWA, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZCADB (nonregional member), AfDB (nonregional member), Arctic Council (observer), Australia Group, Benelux, BIS, CBSS (observer), CD, CE, CERN, EAPC, EBRD, ECB, EIB, EITI (implementing country), EMU, ESA, EU, FAO, FATF, G-10, IADB, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, ICC (national committees), ICCt, ICRM, IDA, IEA, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD (partners), IHO, ILO, IMF, IMO, IMSO, Interpol, IOC, IOM, IPU, ISO, ITSO, ITU, ITUC (NGOs), MIGA, MINUSMA, NATO, NEA, NSG, OAS (observer), OECD, OPCW, OSCE, Pacific Alliance (observer), Paris Club, PCA, Schengen Convention, SELEC (observer), UN, UNCTAD, UNDOF, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UNMISS, UNRWA, UN Security Council (temporary), UNTSO, UNWTO, UPU, WCO, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTO, ZC
Diplomatic representation in the USchief of mission: Ambassador Emily Margarethe HABER (since 22 June 2018)

chancery: 4645 Reservoir Road NW, Washington, DC 20007

telephone: [1] (202) 298-4000

FAX: [1] (202) 298-4261

email address and website:
info@washington.diplo.de

https://www.germany.info/us-en

consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco
chief of mission: Ambassador Andre HASPELS (since 16 September 2019)

chancery: 4200 Linnean Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008

telephone: [1] (202) 244-5300

FAX: [1] (202) 362-3430

email address and website:
https://www.netherlandsworldwide.nl/countries/united-states/about-us/embassy-in-washington-dc

consulate(s) general: Atlanta, Chicago, Miami, New York, San Francisco
Diplomatic representation from the USchief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Chargé d’Affaires Woodward "Clark" PRICE (since 1 July 2021)

embassy: Pariser Platz 2, 10117 Berlin

Clayallee 170, 14191 Berlin (administrative services)

mailing address: 5090 Berlin Place, Washington DC  20521-5090

telephone: [49] (30) 8305-0

FAX: [49] (30) 8305-1215

email address and website:
BerlinPCO@state.gov

https://de.usembassy.gov/

consulate(s) general: Dusseldorf, Frankfurt am Main, Hamburg, Leipzig, Munich
chief of mission: Ambassador (vacant); Charge d'Affaires Marja VERLOOP (since 17 January 2021)

embassy: John Adams Park 1, 2244 BZ Wassenaar

mailing address: 5780 Amsterdam Place, Washington DC  20521-5780

telephone: [31] (70) 310-2209

FAX: [31] (70) 310-2207

email address and website:
AmsterdamUSC@state.gov

https://nl.usembassy.gov/

consulate(s) general: Amsterdam
Flag descriptionthree equal horizontal bands of black (top), red, and gold; these colors have played an important role in German history and can be traced back to the medieval banner of the Holy Roman Emperor - a black eagle with red claws and beak on a gold fieldthree equal horizontal bands of red (bright vermilion; top), white, and blue (cobalt); similar to the flag of Luxembourg, which uses a lighter blue and is longer; the colors were derived from those of WILLIAM I, Prince of Orange, who led the Dutch Revolt against Spanish sovereignty in the latter half of the 16th century; originally the upper band was orange, but because its dye tended to turn red over time, the red shade was eventually made the permanent color; the banner is perhaps the oldest tricolor in continuous use
National anthemname: "Das Lied der Deutschen" (Song of the Germans)

lyrics/music: August Heinrich HOFFMANN VON FALLERSLEBEN/Franz Joseph HAYDN

note: adopted 1922; the anthem, also known as "Deutschlandlied" (Song of Germany), was originally adopted for its connection to the March 1848 liberal revolution; following appropriation by the Nazis of the first verse, specifically the phrase, "Deutschland, Deutschland ueber alles" (Germany, Germany above all) to promote nationalism, it was banned after 1945; in 1952, its third verse was adopted by West Germany as its national anthem; in 1990, it became the national anthem for the reunited Germany
name: "Het Wilhelmus" (The William)

lyrics/music: Philips VAN MARNIX van Sint Aldegonde (presumed)/unknown

note: adopted 1932, in use since the 17th century, making it the oldest national anthem in the world; also known as "Wilhelmus van Nassouwe" (William of Nassau), it is in the form of an acrostic, where the first letter of each stanza spells the name of the leader of the Dutch Revolt
International law organization participationaccepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdictionaccepts compulsory ICJ jurisdiction with reservations; accepts ICCt jurisdiction
National symbol(s)eagle; national colors: black, red, yellowlion, tulip; national color: orange
Citizenshipcitizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a German citizen or a resident alien who has lived in Germany at least 8 years

dual citizenship recognized: yes, but requires prior permission from government

residency requirement for naturalization: 8 years
citizenship by birth: no

citizenship by descent only: at least one parent must be a citizen of the Netherlands

dual citizenship recognized: no

residency requirement for naturalization: 5 years

Economy

GermanyNetherlands
Economy - overview

The German economy - the fifth largest economy in the world in PPP terms and Europe's largest - is a leading exporter of machinery, vehicles, chemicals, and household equipment. Germany benefits from a highly skilled labor force, but, like its Western European neighbors, faces significant demographic challenges to sustained long-term growth. Low fertility rates and a large increase in net immigration are increasing pressure on the country's social welfare system and necessitate structural reforms.

Reforms launched by the government of Chancellor Gerhard SCHROEDER (1998-2005), deemed necessary to address chronically high unemployment and low average growth, contributed to strong economic growth and falling unemployment. These advances, as well as a government subsidized, reduced working hour scheme, help explain the relatively modest increase in unemployment during the 2008-09 recession - the deepest since World War II. The German Government introduced a minimum wage in 2015 that increased to $9.79 (8.84 euros) in January 2017.

Stimulus and stabilization efforts initiated in 2008 and 2009 and tax cuts introduced in Chancellor Angela MERKEL's second term increased Germany's total budget deficit - including federal, state, and municipal - to 4.1% in 2010, but slower spending and higher tax revenues reduced the deficit to 0.8% in 2011 and in 2017 Germany reached a budget surplus of 0.7%. A constitutional amendment approved in 2009 limits the federal government to structural deficits of no more than 0.35% of GDP per annum as of 2016, though the target was already reached in 2012.

Following the March 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, Chancellor Angela MERKEL announced in May 2011 that eight of the country's 17 nuclear reactors would be shut down immediately and the remaining plants would close by 2022. Germany plans to replace nuclear power largely with renewable energy, which accounted for 29.5% of gross electricity consumption in 2016, up from 9% in 2000. Before the shutdown of the eight reactors, Germany relied on nuclear power for 23% of its electricity generating capacity and 46% of its base-load electricity production.

The German economy suffers from low levels of investment, and a government plan to invest 15 billion euros during 2016-18, largely in infrastructure, is intended to spur needed private investment. Domestic consumption, investment, and exports are likely to drive German GDP growth in 2018, and the country’s budget and trade surpluses are likely to remain high.

The Netherlands, the sixth-largest economy in the European Union, plays an important role as a European transportation hub, with a consistently high trade surplus, stable industrial relations, and low unemployment. Industry focuses on food processing, chemicals, petroleum refining, and electrical machinery. A highly mechanized agricultural sector employs only 2% of the labor force but provides large surpluses for food-processing and underpins the country’s status as the world’s second largest agricultural exporter.

The Netherlands is part of the euro zone, and as such, its monetary policy is controlled by the European Central Bank. The Dutch financial sector is highly concentrated, with four commercial banks possessing over 80% of banking assets, and is four times the size of Dutch GDP.

In 2008, during the financial crisis, the government budget deficit hit 5.3% of GDP. Following a protracted recession from 2009 to 2013, during which unemployment doubled to 7.4% and household consumption contracted for four consecutive years, economic growth began inching forward in 2014. Since 2010, Prime Minister Mark RUTTE’s government has implemented significant austerity measures to improve public finances and has instituted broad structural reforms in key policy areas, including the labor market, the housing sector, the energy market, and the pension system. In 2017, the government budget returned to a surplus of 0.7% of GDP, with economic growth of 3.2%, and GDP per capita finally surpassed pre-crisis levels. The fiscal policy announced by the new government in the 2018-2021 coalition plans for increases in government consumption and public investment, fueling domestic demand and household consumption and investment. The new government’s policy also plans to increase demand for workers in the public and private sector, forecasting a further decline in the unemployment rate, which hit 4.8% in 2017.

GDP (purchasing power parity)$4,482,448,000,000 (2019 est.)

$4,457,688,000,000 (2018 est.)

$4,401,873,000,000 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2010 dollars
$986.847 billion (2019 est.)

$970.567 billion (2018 est.)

$948.181 billion (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2010 dollars
GDP - real growth rate0.59% (2019 est.)

1.3% (2018 est.)

2.91% (2017 est.)
1.63% (2019 est.)

2.32% (2018 est.)

3.02% (2017 est.)
GDP - per capita (PPP)$53,919 (2019 est.)

$53,768 (2018 est.)

$53,255 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2017 dollars
$56,935 (2019 est.)

$56,325 (2018 est.)

$55,348 (2017 est.)

note: data are in 2010 dollars
GDP - composition by sectoragriculture: 0.7% (2017 est.)

industry: 30.7% (2017 est.)

services: 68.6% (2017 est.)
agriculture: 1.6% (2017 est.)

industry: 17.9% (2017 est.)

services: 70.2% (2017 est.)
Population below poverty line14.8% (2018 est.)13.6% (2019 est.)
Household income or consumption by percentage sharelowest 10%: 3.6%

highest 10%: 24% (2000)
lowest 10%: 2.3%

highest 10%: 24.9% (2014 est.)
Inflation rate (consumer prices)1.4% (2019 est.)

1.7% (2018 est.)

1.5% (2017 est.)
2.6% (2019 est.)

1.7% (2018 est.)

1.3% (2017 est.)
Labor force44.585 million (2020 est.)8.907 million (2020 est.)
Labor force - by occupationagriculture: 1.4%

industry: 24.2%

services: 74.3% (2016)
agriculture: 1.2%

industry: 17.2%

services: 81.6% (2015 est.)
Unemployment rate4.98% (2019 est.)

5.19% (2018 est.)
3.41% (2019 est.)

3.84% (2018 est.)
Distribution of family income - Gini index31.9 (2016 est.)

30 (1994)
28.5 (2017 est.)

25.1 (2013 est.)
Budgetrevenues: 1.665 trillion (2017 est.)

expenditures: 1.619 trillion (2017 est.)
revenues: 361.4 billion (2017 est.)

expenditures: 352.4 billion (2017 est.)
Industriesamong the world's largest and most technologically advanced producers of iron, steel, coal, cement, chemicals, machinery, vehicles, machine tools, electronics, automobiles, food and beverages, shipbuilding, textilesagroindustries, metal and engineering products, electrical machinery and equipment, chemicals, petroleum, construction, microelectronics, fishing
Industrial production growth rate3.3% (2017 est.)3.3% (2017 est.)
Agriculture - productsmilk, sugar beet, wheat, barley, potatoes, pork, maize, rye, rapeseed, triticalemilk, potatoes, sugar beet, pork, onions, wheat, poultry, tomatoes, carrots/turnips, beef
Exports$2,004,158,000,000 (2019 est.)

$1,984,745,000,000 (2018 est.)

$1,937,273,000,000 (2017 est.)
$857.574 billion (2019 est.)

$835.759 billion (2018 est.)

$801.942 billion (2017 est.)
Exports - commoditiescars and vehicle parts, packaged medicines, aircraft, medical cultures/vaccines, industrial machinery (2019)refined petroleum, packaged medicines, broadcasting equipment, photography equipment, computers (2019)
Exports - partnersUnited States 9%, France 8%, China 7%, Netherlands 6%, United Kingdom 6%, Italy 5%, Poland 5%, Austria 5% (2019)Germany 20%, Belgium 12%, United Kingdom 9%, France 7%, United States 5% (2019)
Imports$1,804,453,000,000 (2019 est.)

$1,759,299,000,000 (2018 est.)

$1,695,300,000,000 (2017 est.)
$755.65 billion (2019 est.)

$732.865 billion (2018 est.)

$700.657 billion (2017 est.)
Imports - commoditiescars and vehicle parts, packaged medicines, crude petroleum, refined petroleum, medical cultures/vaccines (2019)crude petroleum, refined petroleum, broadcasting equipment, computers, cars (2019)
Imports - partnersNetherlands 9%, China 8%, France 7%, Belgium 6%, Poland 6%, Italy 6%, Czechia 5%, United States 5% (2019)Germany 15%, China 11%, Belgium 9%, United States 8%, Russia 7%, United Kingdom 5% (2019)
Debt - external$5,671,463,000,000 (2019 est.)

$5,751,408,000,000 (2018 est.)
$4,345,413,000,000 (2019 est.)

$4,625,016,000,000 (2018 est.)
Exchange rateseuros (EUR) per US dollar -

0.82771 (2020 est.)

0.90338 (2019 est.)

0.87789 (2018 est.)

0.885 (2014 est.)

0.7634 (2013 est.)
euros (EUR) per US dollar -

0.82771 (2020 est.)

0.90338 (2019 est.)

0.87789 (2018 est.)

0.885 (2014 est.)

0.7634 (2013 est.)
Fiscal yearcalendar yearcalendar year
Public debt63.9% of GDP (2017 est.)

67.9% of GDP (2016 est.)

note: general government gross debt is defined in the Maastricht Treaty as consolidated general government gross debt at nominal value, outstanding at the end of the year in the following categories of government liabilities (as defined in ESA95): currency and deposits (AF.2), securities other than shares excluding financial derivatives (AF.3, excluding AF.34), and loans (AF.4); the general government sector comprises the sub-sectors of central government, state government, local government and social security funds; the series are presented as a percentage of GDP and in millions of euros; GDP used as a denominator is the gross domestic product at current market prices; data expressed in national currency are converted into euro using end-of-year exchange rates provided by the European Central Bank
56.5% of GDP (2017 est.)

61.3% of GDP (2016 est.)

note: data cover general government debt and include debt instruments issued (or owned) by government entities other than the treasury; the data include treasury debt held by foreign entities; the data include debt issued by subnational entities, as well as intragovernmental debt; intragovernmental debt consists of treasury borrowings from surpluses in the social funds, such as for retirement, medical care, and unemployment, debt instruments for the social funds are not sold at public auctions
Reserves of foreign exchange and gold$200.1 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

$173.7 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
$38.44 billion (31 December 2017 est.)

$38.21 billion (31 December 2015 est.)
Current Account Balance$280.238 billion (2019 est.)

$297.434 billion (2018 est.)
$90.207 billion (2019 est.)

$98.981 billion (2018 est.)
GDP (official exchange rate)$3,860,923,000,000 (2019 est.)$907.042 billion (2019 est.)
Taxes and other revenues45% (of GDP) (2017 est.)43.4% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Budget surplus (+) or deficit (-)1.3% (of GDP) (2017 est.)1.1% (of GDP) (2017 est.)
Unemployment, youth ages 15-24total: 5.8%

male: 6.6%

female: 4.8% (2019 est.)
total: 6.7%

male: 7.3%

female: 6.2% (2019 est.)
GDP - composition, by end usehousehold consumption: 53.1% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 19.5% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 20.4% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: -0.5% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 47.3% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -39.7% (2017 est.)
household consumption: 44.3% (2017 est.)

government consumption: 24.2% (2017 est.)

investment in fixed capital: 20.5% (2017 est.)

investment in inventories: 0.2% (2017 est.)

exports of goods and services: 83% (2017 est.)

imports of goods and services: -72.3% (2017 est.)
Gross national saving28.5% of GDP (2019 est.)

28.7% of GDP (2018 est.)

28.4% of GDP (2017 est.)
31.2% of GDP (2019 est.)

31.8% of GDP (2018 est.)

31.4% of GDP (2017 est.)

Energy

GermanyNetherlands
Electricity - production612.8 billion kWh (2016 est.)109.3 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - consumption536.5 billion kWh (2016 est.)108.8 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - exports78.86 billion kWh (2016 est.)19.34 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Electricity - imports28.34 billion kWh (2016 est.)24.26 billion kWh (2016 est.)
Oil - production41,000 bbl/day (2018 est.)18,000 bbl/day (2018 est.)
Oil - imports1.836 million bbl/day (2017 est.)1.094 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
Oil - exports6,569 bbl/day (2017 est.)7,984 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Oil - proved reserves129.6 million bbl (1 January 2018 est.)81.13 million bbl (1 January 2018 est.)
Natural gas - proved reserves39.5 billion cu m (1 January 2018 est.)801.4 billion cu m (1 January 2018 est.)
Natural gas - production7.9 billion cu m (2017 est.)45.33 billion cu m (2017 est.)

note: the Netherlands has curbed gas production due to seismic activity in the province of Groningen, largest source of gas reserves
Natural gas - consumption93.36 billion cu m (2017 est.)43.38 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - exports34.61 billion cu m (2017 est.)51.25 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Natural gas - imports119.5 billion cu m (2017 est.)51 billion cu m (2017 est.)
Electricity - installed generating capacity208.5 million kW (2016 est.)34.17 million kW (2016 est.)
Electricity - from fossil fuels41% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)75% of total installed capacity (2016 est.)
Electricity - from hydroelectric plants2% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)0% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from nuclear fuels5% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)1% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Electricity - from other renewable sources52% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)23% of total installed capacity (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - production2.158 million bbl/day (2017 est.)1.282 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - consumption2.46 million bbl/day (2017 est.)954,500 bbl/day (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - exports494,000 bbl/day (2017 est.)2.406 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
Refined petroleum products - imports883,800 bbl/day (2017 est.)2.148 million bbl/day (2017 est.)
Electricity accesselectrification - total population: 100% (2020)electrification - total population: 100% (2020)

Telecommunications

GermanyNetherlands
Telephones - main lines in usetotal subscriptions: 40.4 million

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 50.35 (2019 est.)
total subscriptions: 5.56 million

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 32.31 (2019 est.)
Telephones - mobile cellulartotal subscriptions: 107.2 million

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 133.61 (2019 est.)
total subscriptions: 21.762 million

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 126.45 (2019 est.)
Internet country code.de.nl
Internet userstotal: 72,202,773

percent of population: 89.74% (July 2018 est.)
total: 16,243,928

percent of population: 94.71% (July 2018 est.)
Telecommunication systemsgeneral assessment:

one of the world's most technologically advanced telecom systems with additional security measures; LTE universally available and 5G service to over 80% of population; mobile market is driven by data, with increased broadband subscribership; regulatory measures aimed at facilitating wholesale network access to provide fiber-based broadband services; government aims to provide smart technology solutions; over 60 cities use smart technology in urban development, many through joint initiative with private sector, utility companies, and universities; importer of broadcast equipment and computers from China (2021)

(2020)

domestic: extensive system of automatic telephone exchanges connected by modern networks of fiber-optic cable, coaxial cable, microwave radio relay, and a domestic satellite system; cellular telephone service is widely available, expanding rapidly, and includes roaming service to many foreign countries; 48 per 100 for fixed-line and 128 per 100 for mobile-cellular (2019)

international: country code - 49; landing points for SeaMeWe-3, TAT-14, AC-1, CONTACT-3, Fehmarn Balt, C-Lion1, GC1, GlobalConnect-KPN, and Germany-Denmark 2 & 3 - submarine cables to Europe, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Southeast Asia and Australia; as well as earth stations in the Inmarsat, Intelsat, Eutelsat, and Intersputnik satellite systems (2019)

note: the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a significant impact on production and supply chains globally; since 2020, some aspects of the telecom sector have experienced downturn, particularly in mobile device production; many network operators delayed upgrades to infrastructure; progress towards 5G implementation was postponed or slowed in some countries; consumer spending on telecom services and devices was affected by large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes; the crucial nature of telecom services as a tool for work and school from home became evident, and received some support from governments

general assessment:

highly developed and well maintained; Dutch telecom market is gradually migrating to upgraded platforms; operators repurposing their spectrum and physical assets for LTE and 5G; one of the highest fixed broadband penetration rates in the world, with competition between DSL and fiber networks; fixed-line voice market is in decline while VoIP and mobile platforms advance; plans for 3G network shutdown in 2023; operators are concentrating investment on LTE-A and 5G services; operators and banks launch m-payments system; adoption of smart city concepts and technology in major cities; major exporter of broadcasting equipment and computers to Europe, and importer of same from China (2021)

(2020)

domestic: extensive fixed-line, fiber-optic network; large cellular telephone system with five major operators utilizing the third generation of the Global System for Mobile Communications technology; one in five households now use Voice over the Internet Protocol services; fixed-line 33 per 100 and mobile-cellular 127 per 100 persons (2019)

international: country code - 31; landing points for Farland North, TAT-14, Circe North, Concerto, Ulysses 2, AC-1, UK-Netherlands 14, and COBRAcable submarine cables which provide links to the US and Europe; satellite earth stations - 5 (3 Intelsat - 1 Indian Ocean and 2 Atlantic Ocean, 1 Eutelsat, and 1 Inmarsat) (2019)

note: the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a significant impact on production and supply chains globally; since 2020, some aspects of the telecom sector have experienced downturn, particularly in mobile device production; many network operators delayed upgrades to infrastructure; progress towards 5G implementation was postponed or slowed in some countries; consumer spending on telecom services and devices was affected by large-scale job losses and the consequent restriction on disposable incomes; the crucial nature of telecom services as a tool for work and school from home became evident, and received some support from governments

Broadband - fixed subscriptionstotal: 35,071,539

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 43.71 (2019 est.)
total: 7.459 million

subscriptions per 100 inhabitants: 43.34 (2019 est.)
Broadcast mediaa mixture of publicly operated and privately owned TV and radio stations; 70 national and regional public broadcasters compete with nearly 400 privately owned national and regional TV stations; more than 90% of households have cable or satellite TV; hundreds of radio stations including multiple national radio networks, regional radio networks, and a large number of local radio stationsmore than 90% of households are connected to cable or satellite TV systems that provide a wide range of domestic and foreign channels; public service broadcast system includes multiple broadcasters, 3 with a national reach and the remainder operating in regional and local markets; 2 major nationwide commercial television companies, each with 3 or more stations, and many commercial TV stations in regional and local markets; nearly 600 radio stations with a mix of public and private stations providing national or regional coverage

Transportation

GermanyNetherlands
Railwaystotal: 33,590 km (2017)

standard gauge: 33,331 km 1.435-m gauge (19,973 km electrified) (2015)

narrow gauge: 220 km 1.000-m gauge (79 km electrified)

15 km 0.900-m gauge, 24 km 0.750-m gauge (2015)
total: 3,058 km (2016)

standard gauge: 3,058 km 1.435-m gauge (2,314 km electrified) (2016)
Roadwaystotal: 625,000 km (2017)

paved: 625,000 km (includes 12,996 km of expressways) (2017)

note: includes local roads
total: 139,124 km (includes 3,654 km of expressways) (2016)
Waterways7,467 km (Rhine River carries most goods; Main-Danube Canal links North Sea and Black Sea) (2012)6,237 km (navigable by ships up to 50 tons) (2012)
Pipelines37 km condensate, 26985 km gas, 2400 km oil, 4479 km refined products, 8 km water (2013)14000 km gas, 2500 km oil and refined products, 3000 km chemicals (2016)
Ports and terminalsmajor seaport(s): Baltic Sea - Kiel, Rostock
North Sea - Bremerhaven, Brunsbuttel, Emden, Hamburg, Wilhelmshaven

oil terminal(s): Brunsbuttel Canal terminals

container port(s) (TEUs): Bremen/Bremerhaven (4,856,900), Hamburg (9,274,215) (2019)

LNG terminal(s) (import): Hamburg

river port(s): Bremen (Weser); Bremerhaven (Geeste); Duisburg, Karlsruhe, Neuss-Dusseldorf (Rhine); Lubeck (Wakenitz); Brunsbuttel, Hamburg (Elbe)
major seaport(s): IJmuiden, Vlissingen

container port(s) (TEUs): Rotterdam (14,810,804) (2019)

LNG terminal(s) (import): Rotterdam

river port(s): Amsterdam (Nordsee Kanaal); Moerdijk (Hollands Diep River); Rotterdam (Rhine River); Terneuzen (Western Scheldt River)
Merchant marinetotal: 607

by type: bulk carrier 1, container ship 84, general cargo 86, oil tanker 37, other 399 (2020)
total: 1,200

by type: bulk carrier 10, container ship 45, general cargo 557, oil tanker 23, other 565 (2020)
Airportstotal: 539 (2013)total: 29 (2013)
Airports - with paved runwaystotal: 318 (2017)

over 3,047 m: 14 (2017)

2,438 to 3,047 m: 49 (2017)

1,524 to 2,437 m: 60 (2017)

914 to 1,523 m: 70 (2017)

under 914 m: 125 (2017)
total: 23 (2017)

over 3,047 m: 3 (2017)

2,438 to 3,047 m: 11 (2017)

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2017)

914 to 1,523 m: 6 (2017)

under 914 m: 2 (2017)
Airports - with unpaved runwaystotal: 221 (2013)

1,524 to 2,437 m: 1 (2013)

914 to 1,523 m: 35 (2013)

under 914 m: 185 (2013)
total: 6 (2013)

914 to 1,523 m: 4 (2013)

under 914 m: 2 (2013)
Heliports23 (2013)1 (2013)
National air transport systemnumber of registered air carriers: 20 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 1,113

annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 109,796,202 (2018)

annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 7,969,860,000 mt-km (2018)
number of registered air carriers: 8 (2020)

inventory of registered aircraft operated by air carriers: 238

annual passenger traffic on registered air carriers: 43,996,044 (2018)

annual freight traffic on registered air carriers: 5,886,510,000 mt-km (2018)
Civil aircraft registration country code prefixDPH

Military

GermanyNetherlands
Military branchesFederal Armed Forces (Bundeswehr): Army (Heer), Navy (Deutsche Marine, includes naval air arm), Air Force (Luftwaffe, includes air defense), Joint Support Service (Streitkraeftebasis, SKB), Central Medical Service (Zentraler Sanitaetsdienst, ZSanDstBw), Cyber and Information Space Command (Kommando Cyber- und Informationsraum, Kdo CIR) (2021)Royal Netherlands Army, Royal Netherlands Navy (includes Naval Air Service and Marine Corps), Royal Netherlands Air Force, Royal Netherlands Marechaussee (Military Constabulary) (2021)

note: the Netherlands Coast Guard and the Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard are civilian in nature, but managed by the Royal Netherlands Navy
Military service age and obligation17-23 years of age for male and female voluntary military service; conscription ended July 2011; service obligation 8-23 months or 12 years; women have been eligible for voluntary service in all military branches and positions since 2001 (2019)17 years of age for an all-volunteer force; conscription abolished in 1996 (2019)
Military expenditures - percent of GDP1.56% of GDP (2020 est.)

1.36% of GDP (2019)

1.25% of GDP (2018)

1.23% of GDP (2017)

1.2% of GDP (2016)
1.49% of GDP (2020 est.)

1.35% of GDP (2019)

1.22% of GDP (2018)

1.15% of GDP (2017)

1.16% of GDP (2016)
Military - notethe Federal Republic of Germany joined NATO in May 1955; with the reunification of Germany in October 1990, the states of the former German Democratic Republic joined the Federal Republic of Germany in its membership of NATOthe Netherlands is a member of NATO and was one of the original 12 countries to sign the North Atlantic Treaty (also known as the Washington Treaty) in 1949

in 2018, the Defense Ministers of Belgium, Denmark and the Netherlands signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) for the creation of a Composite Special Operations Component Command (C-SOCC); the C-SOCC was declared operational in December 2020

Transnational Issues

GermanyNetherlands
Disputes - international

none

none

Illicit drugssource of precursor chemicals for South American cocaine processors; transshipment point for and consumer of Southwest Asian heroin, Latin American cocaine, and European-produced synthetic drugs; major financial centermajor European producer of synthetic drugs, including ecstasy, and cannabis cultivator; important gateway for cocaine, heroin, and hashish entering Europe; major source of US-bound ecstasy and a significant consumer of ecstasy; a large financial sector vulnerable to money laundering
Refugees and internally displaced personsrefugees (country of origin): 572,818 (Syria), 141,650 (Iraq), 140,366 (Afghanistan), 58,569 (Eritrea), 43,244 (Iran), 28,470 (Turkey), 26,015 (Somalia), 8,722 (Russia), 8,639 (Serbia and Kosovo), 8,125 (Pakistan), 7,828 (Nigeria) (2019)

stateless persons: 26,675 (2020)
refugees (country of origin): 31,694 (Syria), 14,809 (Eritrea), 13,007 (Somalia), 8,423 (Iraq), 5,815 (Afghanistan) (2019)

stateless persons: 2,006 (2020)

Source: CIA Factbook