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Government support for entrepreneurs

Water permit

This information is provided by: Netherlands Enterprise Agency

In the Netherlands, if you perform activities in surface water or use groundwater, you are often required to submit a notification. In some cases you will need a water permit (watervergunning), including when:

  • discharging waste water directly into surface water
  • extracting groundwater
  • conducting activities near civil engineering structures (e.g. motorway, viaduct, tunnel, bridge, inland waterway, dike)
  • constructing water storage facilities
  • filling in waterways

Extracting groundwater or infiltration water

If you suffer damages as a result of a change or (partial or complete) withdrawal of your permit to extract groundwater or infiltrate water change, you can apply for compensation to the provincial authorities. If you own or use land or a house that suffered damages as a result of the extraction or infiltration of (ground)water, you can apply for compensation to the provincial authorities if the party responsible cannot be identified.

Water permit application

You can apply for a water permit or submit the notification both online and written. You can apply directly via the 'Service Counter All-in-one permit for physical aspects'External link (Omgevingsloket Online, OLO) (Dutch). You have to identify yourself with eRecognition. For this purpose you need an e-Identifier with at least a level 2 reliability.

For non-resident foreign companies and non-resident foreign private persons the online procedure is slightly different, since they cannot obtain the necessary Dutch e-Identifier. If you belong to one of these categories, you must first apply for a special account at InfoMil. Generally you will then receive your username and password within 2 working days, with which you can apply for a water permit (or an All-in-One Permit for Physical Aspects) at the OLO websiteExternal link.

Did you apply for the water permit via the OLO website? In that case, you can have your application processed digitally via Message Box by stating your Message Box name with your application. At the province of Noord-Brabant you can also, via Message Box, apply digitally for compensation. Message Box is a secure e-mail system that enables you as an entrepreneur to exchange digital messages with Dutch government agencies.

Dispensation for filling in a roadside ditch

If you intend to fill in a ditch, you may need to apply for dispensation. You must apply to:

  • the municipality with respect to the zoning plan
  • the province with respect to the Road Regulations or the Water Management Plan
  • the water board with respect to a water board by-law

The application for dispensation regarding filling in a roadside ditch can also be made online using Message Box. Message Box is a secure email system that enables you as an entrepreneur to exchange digital messages with Dutch government agencies.

This information is provided by:

Netherlands Enterprise Agency