The Netherlands lays claim to being the ideal location for European distribution

The Netherlands remains an ideal location for European distribution from a cost and quality perspective, and is also a good location for a green supply chain. This can be concluded from the latest update of the benchmark study ‘High quality, competitive costs, Benchmarking the Netherlands as Gateway to Europe’, in which different logistics hot-spots in Europe are compared in terms of their attractiveness as location for European distribution centres.
Different logistics hotspots in Europe compared
In this benchmark study, conducted by NDL/HIDC and partners, Buck Consultants International and Ernst & Young, different logistics hotspots in Europe are compared as location for European distribution centres by analysing a number of business cases in different industries (lifestyle, pharmaceuticals, spare parts, high-tech, med-tech, aerospace and high tech), using characteristics specific to supply chains in those industries.
Many companies select the location for their European distribution centre based on a limited number of cost factors. However, as earlier versions of the benchmark study illustrated, a location decision can have a large impact on the total supply chain costs of a company. Therefore operating costs that may vary significantly per location, such as labour costs and costs for inbound and outbound transportation, as well as quality aspects should also be taken into account when deciding where a new distribution centre should be located. As sustainability is increasingly regarded as an important driver for business decisions, the impact of different locations on a company’s carbon footprint, was also taken into account.
With the benchmark study, NDL/HIDC claims to offer international companies a tool to make the right decision with regards to setting up a distribution centre in Europe.
The Netherlands is favourable in terms of total supply chain costs, quality and sustainability
The findings of this latest study show that, although the competition of the neighbouring countries is fierce, the Netherlands remains an attractive location for distribution centre activities. Due to its position as gateway to Europe and the large volumes of intercontinental sea- and airfreight into the country (the Netherlands hosts the largest seaport, and the third largest cargo airport in Europe), transport tariffs to and from the Netherlands are generally competitive. The Netherlands is ahead of other European countries in terms of flexibility of labour, often crucial for upscaling or downscaling logistics operations. And the Dutch tax and customs authorities are claimed to be the most efficient en business oriented in the world. Besides, due to the many opportunities for the use of environmentally friendly modes of transport, and its relative proximity to the centre of gravity of the European consumer market, the Netherlands is also a good location for a greener supply chain.
Holland International Distribution Council (NDL/HIDC) is a private non-profit organisation representing around 400 companies and organisations in the Dutch logistics industry and aims to improve their competitive position. NDL/HIDC helps international companies make a smooth entry into the European market through the region’s leading gateway, the Netherlands. More information on NDL/HIDC can be found on  

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