Economy Of The Netherlands
At the time of writing the Netherlands is the 16th largest economy of the world. (see: List of countries by GDP (nominal)) Between 1998 and 2000 annual economic growth (GDP) averaged nearly 4%, well above the European average. Growth slowed considerably in 2001-05 as part of the global economic slowdown. 2006 however, showed a promising 2.9% growth. Yearly growth accelerated to 4.2% in the third quarter of 2007. The Dutch economy was hit considerably by the ongoing global financial crisis and the ensuing European debt crisis. Several banks went bankrupt, and a number of others had to receive governmental aid. The Dutch economy is currently in a recession, with an economic decline of 0.6% in the last quarter of 2011. Inflation is 2.5% and rising. Unemployment is relatively low compared to other EU nations with around 6%. The Netherlands managed to maintain its AAA rating at least until September 2012 according to the three major credit rating agencies.
The Netherlands is a founding member of the European Union, the OECD and the World Trade Organization.
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