For a small country like the Netherlands, it sure does offer big opportunities!

The Netherlands has developed a new taste in emigration, as it has emerged as a new frontrunner interest for South Africans to enhance and grow their careers. The Netherlands is known for its strong economy, excellent employment opportunities, inspiring cities, and high quality of life. The World Economic Forum has ranked the Netherlands 4th in the world for having the most competitive economy. In other words, those coming from South Africa to the Netherlands will find that it is a great place for doing business. The Netherlands provides a hotbed for companies to settle, grow, and triumph in their sector. Placing that statement into consideration, more than 500,000 companies have settled in the Netherlands within the last year.

In this blog, we will discuss more on the benefits of allocating your business and life from South Africa, to the Netherlands.

You can find information on the topics below:

  1. Strategic Location
  2. Language Barrier
  3. Safety
  4. Education
  5. Health care
  6. Immigration process

Strategic Location

The Netherlands is known for being the gateway country which opens the opportunity for business owners. Why? The infrastructure and location allow EU entities to import and export goods with ease. By having our famous harbour located in Rotterdam, and Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, entrepreneurs can reach the whole European market. On top of that, major countries to trade with such as, Germany, the United Kingdom, and France all lie within a day’s reach. With the stable and pro-climate of the Netherlands, there is no question as to why we are considered an excellent base for South African entrepreneurs to investigate expanding in Europe.

Did you also know that in Amsterdam, the Schiphol Airport is one of the largest airports in Europe? Our significant air travel pub and destinations to and from any country had been ranked as the best airport in Europe. The Dutch house airline companies Transavia and KLM, which offers direct flights from South Africa to The Netherlands. Heel Mooi!

Language Barrier

The Dutch language may indeed be one of the hardest to learn. But so, is Afrikaans, right? This can play well in the hands of the right entrepreneur. “How does knowing some Dutch help me?” Without question, settling down in the Netherlands will be ten times easier when language is not the biggest barrier. You can understand the community surrounding you, make you look more professional when working, and you will feel welcomed.


New environments can be overwhelming for those striving to adapt to them. However, knowing that the location you are in, is safe, welcoming, and calm can-do wonders to set your mind at ease, and will allow you to work and roam more freely to explore the country. Fun fact, The Netherlands, is ranked 16th place in World’s Safest Economies and is a close-knit-secured location to live in. Laws are strictly enforced here, which explains why we have crime rates at an all-time low!

Besides that, tolerance is at the centre of the country’s impressive sense of balance. The Dutch welcome people of all races, religions, and cultural backgrounds, which is yet another reason why international people find it easy to settle down here. We find that, especially for people coming from countries where being in danger may be a real threat to living a safe and comfortable life and face inequality and racism, it is important to point out that in the Netherlands, people do not focus on the social hierarchy. You will notice that when entering any bar here, full of people of all financial and ethnic backgrounds socializing together.

Furthermore, when coming from South Africa to the Netherlands, you will certainly experience that the Dutch are especially welcoming. We like to take into consideration that although people can face inequality, racism, and threats in their day-to-day life, this will not be a factor when living in the Netherlands. It is important to mention that living in the Netherlands, people do not focus on hierarchy, looks, or financial status. People mind their own business and are friendly with each other. Especially for expats, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, and Utrecht are the most popular and beautiful places for internationals to settle and fit into. Once you find a roof over your head, get used to your community, and get to know the area around you, you will feel at home!


Education in the Netherlands forms one of the key factors of the great economic success of the Netherlands. Children get 8 years of primary education, Between 4 to 6 years of secondary education (Depending if it is VMBO, HAVO, or VWO). Bilingual education (studies in English) is becoming widely available, with 50% of subjects taught in English. Upon completion, students are offered to enter a higher level of studies at a Dutch university or a university of applied sciences. This study will take 3-5 years to complete. International and Dutch universities make up some of which are considered Europeans’ best. International universities in the Netherlands host 100+ nationalities from around the world. That being said, the international climate for the Netherlands youth is hot!

Health Care

Considering that the Netherlands has high-end specialists and doctors, excellent healthcare is accessible to everyone. Dutch health insurance is a mandatory commodity that every Dutch resident should have. Luckily, there are numerous options at different price points and government assistance for everyone in the Netherlands. For further assistance, the Dutch government can indeed provide a health care allowance that covers up costs of the monthly health insurance.

Immigration Process

For individuals who wish to contribute to the Dutch economy, from South Africa to the Netherlands, starting a business will make you more likely to be admitted to the country. South Africans who wish to apply for a residence permit in the Netherlands must apply for a long-stay visa first. In the case of individuals that want to own a start-up in the Netherlands the application for the long-stay visa should be applied for in person at the Dutch consulate.

Next, let’s explore the option of an intra-company visa. South African business owners who truly want to set up in the Netherlands can go for this option. One of the main requirements is proof of employment of the Dutch company. Furthermore, the following list is what is required from you:

  1. Proof of Employment
  2. Valid Passport
  3. Medical Insurance
  4. Tuberculosis Test: Passed

The company that you are employed in will need to submit details about your status, position at work, and the purpose of your relocation to the Dutch authorities. What is good about this method of immigrating, is that the IND grants the intra-company visa for 4 years and is issued with a Dutch residence permit as well.

By reaching out to us, we can also inform you of our own immigration options.

We recommend that you undergo your research as to which immigration option interests you. Options include the EU Blue Card, Highly Skilled Migrant, Start-up visa, and setting up a payrolling company. Emphasis is placed on setting up a company in the Netherlands. This can be the gateway to obtaining a Dutch residency permit. With the help of our direct business partners, we can get you in touch with our experts who offer payrolling solutions, tax advice, legal advice, immigration options in detail, and accounting services.

The possibility for South African nationals to migrate to the Netherlands holds more options for those eager to begin. Finally, let’s get in contact to assist and introduce you to our network of professionals for further advice.

Let’s get in contact

Changes can start today! Contact us for more information and assistance to emigrate from South Africa to the Netherlands, and open a Dutch company!


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