If you own an international business, you may also have to pay import levies. Contact the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration (Belastingdienst) for detailed information on the Dutch tax system for businesses.
Numerous business tax schemes are available to business owners in the Netherlands, but everyone still needs to pay tax. For example, anyone in business has to file annual tax returns: either income tax (inkomstenbelasting) or corporate tax (vennootschapsbelasting).
Your business will be automatically registered with the Tax and Customs Administration when you register with the Netherlands Chamber of Commerce (KVK) in the Business Register (Handelsregister). It is a mandatory requirement to register your company if it has any form of permanent establishment in the Netherlands. If you represent a foreign company that is not listed in the Dutch Business Register (without a permanent establishment) and you perform services on its behalf in the Netherlands, you will have to register with the Tax and Customs Administration yourself. You will find the foreign companies registration form on the Tax and Customs Administration website.
In the website section Tax schemes you can find information about allowances, exemptions from premium payments or premium discounts, tax rebates, and deductible expenses.
Chat with the Tax Administration
Every day between 09:00 and 16:00 it is possible for starters and SMEs to chat with the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration. Go to https://goedestartbelastingdienst.nl/ to start a chat. You can also make an appointment for a video call with one of their advisors to ask them your tax questions.
Most common taxes
Below we have listed the most common business taxes in the Netherlands.
Turnover tax (btw) / Value added tax (VAT)
Turnover tax or VAT (btw) is a form of turnover tax (omzetbelasting) that you add to most – but not all – goods and services your business sells in the Netherlands (0%, 9%, or 21%). You can usually reclaim the VAT that your business pays on the goods and services it purchases. Turnover tax returns can be filed either monthly, quarterly, or annually. Read how to file your VAT return.
If your business is established outside the Netherlands, but trades in the Netherlands? You will still have to deal with Dutch VAT rules. The rules that apply to businesses outside the Netherlands differ from the rules applicable to businesses in the Netherlands.
Income tax in the Netherlands
If you are a sole trader or a partner in a commercial partnership (Vennootschap onder Firma, vof), and the Tax and Customs Administration considers you to be in business (read more about that in the article Are you an entrepreneur?), you'll have to pay income tax on your business profits. The Tax and Customs Administration applies various criteria to determine your exact status, e.g. anticipated profitability, business practices, autonomy, personal risk, etc. Read more about filing your income tax return.
Corporate tax rates in the Netherlands
If you own a private limited company (besloten vennootschap, bv) or public limited company (naamloze vennootschap, nv), you will have to file returns for corporate income tax in the Netherlands on behalf of your company (vennootschapsbelasting). Foundations, charities, and associations only have to file returns for corporate tax in the Netherlands in specific situations. You may be exempt, depending on your profit levels. Read more about filing your corporation tax return. Check out the corporate tax rates in the Netherlands on government.nl.
Dutch dividend tax
As a private or public limited company you may decide to distribute profits to your shareholders. This usually takes the form of a dividend. If so, you'll also have to pay Dutch dividend tax (dividendbelasting).
Business tax advice for foreign companies
If you already own a business outside the Netherlands and are planning to open a branch in the Netherlands, get in touch with the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency (NFIA). The NFIA has brochures about the Dutch tax system and has offices located around the world where you can talk to an advisor in person.
Municipal, waterboard, and provincial taxes
Depending on your location and type of business, you will be faced with different local taxes, for instance tap water tax, waste disposal tax, and advertising tax, to name but a few. Contact your municipality, provincial or water board to find out which taxes apply to your business.
Compare taxes in Europe
If you are looking into which country you want to move to, and want to compare taxes and tax rates in the EU, you can use the European Commission Search Tax tool.