The Dutch cabinet indicated in last year's Budget Memorandum to set-up an investment fund.

The main reasons for this initiative was due to the fact that the Netherlands: (i) faces reduced productivity growth, (ii) an aging population, (iii) a changed geopolitical context, (iv) climate change and (v) the economic consequences of the corona crisis. The fund should ensure that the Netherlands remains an attractive country, where to do business and where to invest in. As a consequence, the "National Growth Fund" (the “Fund”) has been established.

This Fund is established to sustainably increase the earning capacity of the Netherlands (structural GDP) and relates to project subsidies or tendering. The Fund does not provide generic public financing to private companies. The Fund focuses explicitly on investments with a public interest that serve the earning capacity of the Netherlands, but on which no sufficient private return can be achieved. The Fund has no revolving character and no return objective, but aims to increase the earning capacity of society as a whole.

Over the next five years, the government will allocate a total of 20 billion euros for investments in:

  1. knowledge development,
  2. infrastructure and research,
  3. development & innovation.

The Ministry of Finance and the Ministry Economic Affairs are the fund managers, but an independent committee assesses the proposals, advises the cabinet and monitors progress.

An envisaged project must (entry requirements):

  • have a detailed plan substantiating, among other things, the contribution to the Dutch economy and society, financial costs and benefits and legal feasibility;
  • fall into one of the areas of knowledge development, research and development (Research & Development) and innovation or infrastructure;
  • have a project size of at least € 30 million;
  • complement private investments;
  • complement existing public investments and do not fall within existing government regulations;
  • are non-structural;
  • meet the subsidiarity test;
  • fit within the financial framework of the fund.

The independent committee assesses project proposals based on a predetermined assessment framework and examines this (assessment criteria):

  • effect on the growth of the Dutch economy (the GDP effect);
  • social advantages and disadvantages.



  • Parliamentary papers 35 300, no. 83, Memorandum on the state of the National Finance



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