Our services

The NEC (Nederlandse Export Combinatie – Netherlands Export Combination) was founded in 1952 by the trade for the trade. The NEC consists of a team of experienced advisors who provide entrepreneurs with support and advice in setting up and expanding their international activities. To facilitate this, the NEC organises collective activities such as trade missions, trade show participation and conferences. The NEC often organises these activities in cooperation with Dutch Ministries, the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO), Dutch Embassies abroad, our local partners and branch organisations. In addition, the NEC regularly collaborates with foreign consultant parties to explore mutually beneficial avenues within the Netherlands.

The NEC provides export advice to various individual market segments and establishes contact with agents and distributors. Since 1952, the NEC has been building networks in various sectors around the world. A variety of export specialists with knowledge and experience of the market and your industry are active within the NEC. Our consultants have made their own mark in the international business environment. By means of a practical approach and a large network, the NEC has realised many successful international projects.

Would you like to learn more about what we can do for you, please take a look at our brochure or contact us directly.

The NEC was founded in 1952 by the trade for the trade. The organisation, established as a foundation, aimed to encourage and promote international activities. Without frequent air travel, internet and communication by e-mail, conducting business internationally was complex and time consuming. The NEC Foundation’s collective approach was initiated in order to enter international markets more easily.

“The man with a suitcase full of samples”
To implement this collective approach, the NEC was established as one of the first organisations in the Netherlands in the field of international business relations. Finding international partners such as agents and distributors for companies was one of the organisation’s key tasks. A “globetrotter” representing the NEC travelled to a specifically chosen region with samples and brochures from members of the foundation. This was the modern means of exploring foreign markets at that time. During the trips, new contacts were made, products were presented and opportunities in the market were explored. To achieve this, the NEC networks in these countries were very instrumental. These visits added to the growing NEC network both nationally and internationally; at its peak, there were 560 Dutch member companies. The expression “I believe in the man with the suitcase full of samples” was familiar and understood by all.

Methods of communication and transport changed over the years and doing business internationally on an individual basis became important for many companies. The government also assumed an increasingly decisive role in export promotion and developed numerous initiatives in this area. In 2006, the NEC therefore transitioned from a foundation to a private company. In addition to the collective activities, the NEC started in 2006 to focus on individual trajectories. Furthermore, many projects are now undertaken in collaboration with the Dutch government, whereby processes do not have to be financed by the companies alone. In this context, the NEC works together with the RVO (Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland – Netherlands Enterprise Agency), Ministries, Dutch Embassies and branch organisations.
The combination of both collective and individual export trajectories ensures that the NEC is, to date, a known entity in export support.



65 years Netherlands Export Combination (NEC)

In 1952 4 entrepreneurs decided to work together in order to increase their export opportunities. The Netherlands Export Combination (NEC) was born.

For these companies trade missions were organised by world travellers in order to find them agents, importers and distributors and last but not least to gain market information. To date a worldwide network of partners exists in virtually every country.

The launch of the Internet meant that markets were becoming more transparent and international communication easier. Due to influence of the government, the possibility for business matchmaking during trade missions was offered. As of 2007 the NEC has started to cooperate with both national and international partners (e.g. Netherlands Enterprise Agency, International Trade Development Boards and more). Besides the self-organised activities, activities started to be organised on assignment. It became the key principle to carry out projects in which clients/participants were offered the highest possible added value, by working together with carefully selected partners.
Besides the initiation and execution of trade missions the NEC expanded its business by organising Holland pavilions, by becoming agent for leading trade fairs, by providing individual export advise to clients and by organising export courses. A team of 12 enthusiastic persons carries out all of this.

Below you can find the NEC’s statue: the “world traveller”. The NEC slogan back in the days was: “I believe in the man with the monster suitcase.”

“The man with the monster suitcase”

Over the years the NEC has built an extensive international network with local partners and governments in almost all countries of the world. Within these countries, the NEC works in cooperation with sector-specific partners, allowing us to quickly identify and access the correct and most current information.

Collaboration is of the utmost importance to the NEC. Our strategy is to work together with other parties to maximise the added value of our activities for the participants. This means that we engage specialised knowledge and experience relevant to these projects. To date, this approach has yielded a pleasant and long-lasting relationship with our partners in both the Netherlands and abroad.
In the Netherlands, the NEC works together with and on assignment for embassies, ministries, foreign governments, branch organisations and Dutch companies. The NEC is currently one of the main contractors for the RVO with regards to the execution of inbound and outbound trade missions and trade fair participations.


The NEC organises trade missions to promote international trade. For the planning and organisation of a trade mission, the NEC frequently works in collaboration with or on behalf of the Dutch government, the leading Dutch top sectors and foreign governments. The NEC also often co-operates with branch organisations, local parties, embassies, provinces and municipalities.

An overview of the various missions organised by the NEC is listed below:

A delegation of foreign companies collectively visits the Dutch market. The mission is a good opportunity to strengthen ties between the countries. Dutch companies and organisations can come into contact with the delegation members of interest during the mission. These missions take place within a given sector or within a specific business aspect. An overview of the type of missions that the NEC has already organised:
– An incoming mission for female entrepreneurs
– An incoming mission for a delegation from the potato sector
– An incoming mission for a delegation from the livestock and horticulture sector
– An incoming mission for sustainable businesses

If your organisation would like to organise a trade mission or an informative visit to the Netherlands, please contact us for more information about the possibilities.

A delegation of Dutch companies will collectively visit a foreign market. Both a collective and an individual programme is organised. The collective programme often includes business or project visits within a specific sector, store checks, presentations and networking opportunities. The individual programme may include matchmaking meetings with potential partners, company visits and visits to selected shops.

A delegation of companies or organisations in a specific sector collectively visit a particular market. Participants in this mission want to become acquainted with a new market. The programme is based on the profiles of the participating companies and the visits are often done as a group. During this mission, you will receive answers to the following questions:
• Is this an interesting market for me?
• Does my product fit the needs of the market?
• What are the differences in cultures I’ll need to keep in mind?
• Who are the largest players in the market?
• What opportunities are there for the future?

A delegation of companies from a specific sector or a number of sectors collectively visit a particular market. Participants in this mission are companies that already have some knowledge of the market and who want to come into contact with the main players in the market. The major part of the program consists of individual appointments. The appointments will be scheduled after an extensive intake regarding your ambitions in this market. There are also a number of components that are part of the collective program. During this mission, you will receive answers to the following questions:
• What are the key distribution channels in this market?
• Which important competitors are active here?
• Who are the most important customers in this market?
• Are the parties in this market interested in my product?
• What are the possible ways and best strategy to employ to enter this market with my product?
• What agents or distributors are present and which of these are of interest to me?
Dutch companies may be eligible for a grant from the Dutch government for participating in these missions.

From 29th October until 2nd November 2018 the Netherlands Export Combination (NEC) in partnership with Capacity Africa organised a trade mission for a Kenyan agro delegation to visit the Netherlands. The delegation consisted of 16 persons, whom both make policy and are farmers themselves in Kenya. The mission was a great success, during which the delegation got a good impression of the potential of the Dutch agro sector and what the Netherlands can offer them.

Among other things the Kenyan delegation came to the Netherlands to learn more about ways to improve their local production processes as well as finding out how they could enter the European market. To answer these questions, the NEC organised various business visits as well as a meeting at the Ministry of Agriculture in The Hague. The delegation was very impressed by the Dutch quality and efficiency in the agro sector demonstrated to them during the field visits. After the trade mission the delegation left with a lot of information and ideas to process. We look forward to see the first results of the mission.

Would you like to receive further information about this trade mission or its delegation? Please get in contact with us via info@nec.nl of +31 (0)33 433 0131.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

The NEC-team.

From 25th to 29th September, a delegation from the horticulture sector from Sri Lanka came to the Netherlands. This trade mission was carried out by the Dutch Export Combination on behalf of the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO).


The Sri Lankan delegation consisted of 5 companies from the fruit & vegetables sector, 12 companies from the floriculture sector and 2 government representatives. They came to the Netherlands to gain more knowledge about new technologies and innovations inside the Dutch horticultural sector and to find possible partners for future businesses . For example, they were looking for importers of vegetables & fruits or flowers & plants to introduce the Sri Lankan products to the Dutch market.


The week consisted of various elements, such as company visits, individual matchmaking appointments, attending a number of seminars and an evening reception at the ambassador of Sri Lanka in the Netherlands. For the organization of this mission, the NEC cooperated with Bureau Leeters. Bureau Leeters has carried out a study commissioned by the Dutch government to map out the opportunities for Dutch parties in the horticulture sector. A presentation about the report for Dutch companies was part of the mission. Many Dutch companies showed interest in the seminar and matchmaking and both new and existing contacts were met. We look back on a successful trade mission that has further strengthened the relationship between the Netherlands and Sri Lanka in the horticultural sector.


Incoming Sri Lanka Mission Numbers
Delegation 25 persons
Total Appointments and visits with Dutch companies 15 visits
Matchmaking meetings 25 Dutch companies

The Dutch Export Combination in cooperation with the Dutch embassy in Colombo has organized a  outgoing trade mission for a delegation from the dairy sector in Sri Lanka, commissioned by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland). The Dutch delegation consisted of fourteen different companies which are active in the poultry and the dairy sector. The Dutch delegation was in Sri Lanka from the 27th of November until the 1st of December 2016.


The mission was set up because of the new chances within these sectors in Sri Lanka for Dutch companies. The mission started with a seminar and individual matchmaking Appointments. More than 150 Sri Lankan attendees took part at the individual matchmaking. During an investment session and project visits, further opportunities for cooperation between the Dutch and the Sri Lankan side were investigated.


For more questions or information about this mission, please contact Mr. Joost van Dam.

The Dutch Export Combination has organized a trade mission for a delegation from the dairy sector in Sri Lanka, commissioned by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (Rijksdienst voor Ondernemend Nederland). The delegation was in The Netherlands from the 24th until the 28th of October.


The delegation consisted of the minister of Rural Economic Affairs and Livestock Development from Sri Lanka, the Dutch Ambassador originated in Colombo, two high officials ( National Livestock Development Board, representatives from the Ministry of Rural Economic Affairs and Livestock Development)

The delegation came to The Netherlands to enhance their knowledge about new technologies and innovations around the Dutch dairy sector , to be informed about educations & training possibilities and to find possible new trade partners to work with in the future. The delegation members were looking for parties which are active in the area of genetics, investments , feeding supplies for cows , knowledge about farm management and various processing machines to create cheese and yoghurt.


The week in The Netherlands consisted of diverse elements, such as company visits , individual matchmaking appointments , attending the dairy seminar , a network reception and having dinner at the residence of the Sri Lankan ambassador originated in The Hague. When  organising this mission the NEC worked closely together with the Dutch embassy located in Colombo. A total of 32 companies applied for the seminar and matchmaking event. This resulted in 16 rounds of each fifteen minutes of valuable conversations between the Dutch and Sri Lankan companies. The Dutch side were very much interested in these events which resulted in meeting new potential and existing trade partners. The event has been experienced as very pleasant and positive for both sides and is seen as a start to set foot in Sri Lanka. We look back on a successful trade mission that has further strengthened the relationship between the Netherlands and Sri Lanka in the dairy sector.

Incoming Sri Lanka Mission Amount
Total delegation 21 persons
Total Appointments and visits with Dutch companies 14 visits
Matchmaking meetings 25 dutch companies

Commissioned by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO), the Netherlands Export Combination (NEC) organised, in cooperation with the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Colombo, Sri Lanka, from 17th-24th June an incoming trade mission from Sri Lanka. Thirteen veterinarians, five representatives from layer farmers and five representatives from broiler farmers visited the Netherlands. The mission was meant to let the Sri Lankan delegation get to know more about the Dutch technologies available and used here as well as getting in contact with major Dutch companies within the poultry sector. Several company visits, a business to business matchmaking event and a visit to the VIV Europe fair made this possible.


Seminar & Business Matchmaking
During a specially organised seminar (which also included a business to business matchmaking) at the Poultry museum in Barneveld, the Netherlands, Dutch companies got informed on the current situation and the development of the Sri Lankan poultry sector. After the seminar there was the possibility to meet the Sri Lankan delegation one-on-one. The delegation received an informative tour through the poultry museum. This day turned out to be very successful for all parties involved!



VIV Europe fair
Both the company as the veterinarian delegation visited, after having done several company visits and training sessions, the VIV Europe 2018 fair in Utrecht. The delegation visited the fair multiple days. On Friday only five members of the company delegation went to the VIV Europe fair, where they were interviewed by VIV Worldwide journalist Peter Best, which resulted in very interesting conversations. This interview can be reviewed on the VIV Worldwide website. Both the organised program as well as the VIV Europe visit were very well received by the entire delegation, where they got to meet and get in contact with many interesting company representatives.



Would you like to obtain further information on this incoming trade mission? Please do not hesitate to get in touch with Mr. Joost van Dam.

The Netherlands Export Combination (NEC) was appointed by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency and the Dutch Embassy in Amman to organize the incoming visit of a Jordan representative to the Netherlands.

In two weeks he visited 39 companies and 6 branch organizations from the sectors chemistry (cosmetics, chemicals, plastics and printing and design), wooden furniture and electronics and engineering.

During the appointments the possibilities in the Jordan market and the interest for a possible trade mission to Jordan were discussed.




The consultant represented a total of 71 Jordanian companies from the sectors mentioned above. Every Dutch company had the opportunity to discuss the opportunities in Jordan, to discuss the possibilities for a future cooperation and to ask further questions.

After meeting all the companies and branch organizations, it can be concluded that almost all companies were open for a possible cooperation with Jordan companies. Mainly companies from the sectors plastics, wooden furniture, design and printing and signing showed a noteworthy interest in the Jordanian market. Also, the companies reacted enthusiastic about a possible trade mission to Jordan in October.

Both the Netherlands Export Combination (NEC) and the Jordan representative are able to look back on highly successful meetings that can contribute to the business relation with Jordan.


For further information or questions, please contact Wendy Bakker or Sylvia van der Horst.


logo macro meats

A successful visit
The Australian company ‘Macro Meats’ visited the Netherlands on the 16th and 17th of February to explore the meat sector in the Netherlands and to discuss possibilities for future cooperation. Macro Meats is located in South Australia and is active in kangaroo meat for consumption. The NEC was responsible for all appointments during his visit in the Netherlands. Several businesses have been visited, including wholesalers, manufacturers, distributors and importers from the meat industry.


Mr. Anton Martynenko – Macro Meats:
“We have had a very positive experience working with the Netherlands Export Combination which managed to organize 6 business meetings for us with the interested Dutch companies within a very short period of time and at short notice. Apart from the general consulting and business-matching NEC provided us with the driving and interpretation services in Netherlands which helped us to obtain market intelligence and explore business opportunities for our company on the Dutch market. We would strongly recommend potential importers and exporters to Holland to use NEC’s professional services to develop business with the Dutch companies. Anton Martynenko, Export Manager for Macro Meats, supplier of the premium kangaroo meat products to the European market.”

Foto product Macro Meats

In January 2017 a high level delegation from Ethiopian and Djibouti government officials the Netherlands to enhance cooperation in agro logistics.

The delegation came at the invitation of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in close cooperation with the Dutch Flying Swans consortium.

The mission from Ethiopian and Djibouti officials, including the Ethiopian Minister of Transport and the Djibouti Minister of Transport & Equipment, visited the Netherlands to discuss cooperation and investment possibilities in agro logistics.

The NEC has been appointed by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency to arrange all logistics during the program. NEC cooperated closely with the Dutch Embassy in Addis Ababa.

The Netherlands Export Combination has organized a study visit for representatives from the Lebanese private and public dairy sector.

This visit is organized in cooperation with the Netherlands Enterprise Agency, and took place from the 24th until the 28th of October.

foto-voor-terugblik-website-1 foto-voor-terugblik-website-2

The delegation visited the Netherlands to see and learn more about the Dutch market. Also the delegation was very eager to learn more about the best way to feed the cattle, the production of animal food, the way to strengthen their market position in the dairy sector, the milk collection, the genetics, the hygiene and the quality of milk production. The study visit inspired the delegation to develop their companies to a higher level.


For further information or questions, please contact Mr Joost van Dam

The NEC organises a large number of trade shows annually and is also an agent for several leading trade organisations worldwide.

The NEC regularly organises joint trade shows to collectively present Dutch companies. Each company is assigned its own part of a stand, where products are presented. There is often a Holland Lounge at the booth, with a small kitchen that can be used by the participants of the pavilion. In the Holland Pavilion, “Holland branding” is used to further increase the appeal to foreign parties and the press. During the shows, a networking reception is often organised at the Holland Pavilion where participants may invite (potential) customers.
During the joint trade shows, there is often a NEC advisor present to support the participants in their business activities and to provide advice regarding business practices, the usual conditions for that particular market or the reliability of some potential customers. Visits and matchmaking programs are regularly combined with participation in a trade show so that you can get even more added value out of your visit to a specific market. For these programs, the NEC frequently works together with the local Dutch Governmental network and local Dutch companies.
Dutch companies may be eligible for a grant from the Dutch government for participating in a Holland Pavilion.

Food & Hotel Indonesia is a leading international trade fair in the food and hotel industry. The exhibition attracts many important buyers from all sectors of the hospitality and retail trade. This exhibition also gives international companies an entry point in this thriving and profitable market. For more information about this fair, please visit www.foodhotelindonesia.com.

Please contact Ms. Carianne de Boer for more information.

The Food & Hotel Vietnam trade fair will consist of a wide variety of products and services from hundreds of exhibitors from around the world. For more information about the fair you can go to www.foodnhotelvietnam.com/en/home.

Please contact Ms. Carianne de Boer for more information.

Would you like to start or broaden your export to China and the Asian region (Pacific Ocean)? Take part in the Holland Pavilion during the Bakery China in Shanghai!



  • 95% of the exhibiting companies say to be very satisfied about the Bakery China
  • 97% of the exhibiting companies found the right visitors and business potentials during the Bakery China
  • In 2018 238,263 visitors from 115 countries visited the Bakery China
  • Bakery China offers a wide range of bakery products and technologies from over the world
  • This year the Bakery China will take over the entire Shanghai New International Expo Center, with a total exhibiting space of over 200.000 m2, divided in 17 halls.


IN SHORT: Bakery China attracts globally operating companies active in the bakery industry to participate in this fair. Be sure to take part in this fair!


The NEC will organise a Holland Pavilion at the Bakery China 2019 if there is sufficient interest from companies. In order to participate in the Holland Pavilion at the Bakery China, it takes a one time additional cost of €750,- . When you participate in the Holland Pavilion, you are eligible for a missionvoucher to the value of a maximum of €1500,-, provided by the Dutch Enterprise Agency (RVO).


More information about the Holland Pavilion, Participant costs or other information please read the announcement

Please contact Ms Carianne de Boer or call 0031 (0)33 433 0131 for more information or questions.

The HOFEX is the largest trade fair in the field of food / beverages, hotel, restaurant / food service and supplies / services within North Asia. The 18th edition of the HOFEX will be held from 7 to 10 May 2019 and will take place in the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center as in previous years. The exhibition has a leading role in connecting companies and opportunities between West and East Asia. The HOFEX can count on an area of 66,000 m2 spread over 15 halls with more than 2660 international stand holders from over 74 countries.

In previous editions there were at least 46 national pavilions and a total of 45,000 buyers from 86 visiting countries came to the fair. About 22% of this came from China. The top ten visiting countries/regions are: Hong Kong SAR, China, Macao, Taiwan, the Philippines, Korea, Australia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand. For further information, visit our website.

Please contact Ms. Carianne de Boer for more information

ProWine Asia offers a platform for international producers to introduce themselves in the emerging Southeast Asian market, with a wide congregation of international wines and beverages together with an extensive scope of solutions and concepts adapted for the regions of various consumer markets. For more information about this exhibition you can go to www.prowineasia.com.

Please contact Ms. Carianne de Boer for more information

The Food & Hotel fair in Malaysia consists of a large international mix of exhibitors active in the food & hotel industry. Participation in this exhibition can lead to possible opportunities on this market. For more information, please visit the website  www.foodandhotel.com.

Please contact Ms. Carianne de Boer for more information.

FHA HoReCa (3rd-6th March 2020) and  FHA Food & Beverage (31st March-3rd April 2020)

Following the success of the fair in both 2016 and 2018, the NEC will organise once again a Holland Pavilion in March/April 2020 at the Food & Hotel Asia in Singapore, due to the many opportunities in this Asian market.

Would you like to start or enlarge your export in/to Asia and would you like to get a better insight and understanding of this rapidly growing market? Take part in one of the FHA fairs!

Due to the growing interest in the FHA Singapore, the UBM decided to split the FHA Singapore into two different fairs, to know:

FHA HoReCa (3rd-6th March 2020) and  FHA Food & Beverage (31st March-3rd April 2020)



  • More than 112,500 m2 fair surface
  • More than 78.000 visitors from 100 different countries
  • More than 4.000 exhibitors coming from 70 countries and regions ´s
  • Approximately 71 collective pavilions
  • 6 specialised events
  • World-class competitions and side activities
  • Top conferences, seminars and masterclasses



  • Own stand in a collective Holland pavilion
  • Possibly cost reduction through a mission voucher
  • Assistance in preparing for the fair
  • Exchange experiences with other participants
  • Increased visibility due to the use of Holland branding


Would you like to learn more about these fairs and your opportunities in Asia, or would you like to speak with the project manager about costs, participation, the Holland Pavilion or do you have any other questions, please don’t hesitate and get in touch with Carianne de Boer or call her on +31 (0)33 433 0131.

On the Biennale Kortrijk 2018 the Netherlands Export Combination in partnership with the Dutch Embassy in Belgium organized a Dutch Design Lounge in the theme of Upcycling & Functional Redesign. It was a great success!

The Dutch Design Lounge showcased the international audience the Netherlands is a frontrunner in transforming circular concepts into stunning designs. The ten selected creations covered a broad array of possibilities in Upcycling & Functional Redesign which inspired the visitors as well as exhibitors. Some visitors even claimed the Dutch Design Lounge had the most surprising and value-driven stand on the entire exhibition in Kortrijk.


The Dutch ambassador in Belgium Maryem van den Heuvel visted the Dutch Design Lounge to meet and talk with the ten Dutch Designers. She was amazed by the diversity of the creations, whether it were remade ceramics, reused fish skin and building rubble or redesigned working clothes, wool, stadium seats, jeans and transport crates. She praised the perseverance with which the designers work to make these transformations possible.


The Netherlands Export Combination (NEC) is always pushing young Dutch designers to expand internationally and to show the world what drives these designers in contributing to a more sustainable and creative world. If you are interested in one of the ten designers or if you would like the NEC to organize a Dutch Design Lounge in a certain theme (e.g. Upcycling & Functional Redesign), please feel free to contact us on info@nec.nl or by calling to +31 (0)33 433 0131.

Looking forward to hearing from you.

The NEC-team.


After six successful participation in the Maison&Objet in Paris, the NEC chose to do it differently in the September edition of 2018. Because of the new section and hall layout it was no longer an option to have one country pavilion. As a consequence the NEC decided to have six Dutch Design pavilions on which twelve individual and collective labels presented their innovative designs. The six Dutch Design Pavilions were divided over the Maison pole and the Objet pole.






On the Objet pole KYWIE introduced here wine coolers made of sheepskin for the first time to the French audience, while LUNEdot and KLOQ were presenting their colourful candles and clocks. FOOOTY put together different bal shapes with its ‘Grab, Click, Play’ toy. And lastly, HAMMAM34 showed the beautiful collection of home textile and loungeware and Dutch Brands Collective  collectie en Dutch Brands Collective displayed numerous products of the 50 designers the label represents.



On the Maison pole, Frederik Roije shared his latest product the ‘Beaming Bobber’ to the International audience on his individual Dutch Design Pavilion. Furthermore, there was a larger Dutch Design Pavilion on which five contemporary designers and designer labels showcased their interior products. PUIK design, TWO-O, Silhouet Lighting, New Citizen Design and Reinders! presented what the Netherlands has to offer when it comes to interior design.



The NEC looks back on an interesting edition of the Maison&Objet, an edition that provided perspective for the Dutch designers!

Are you curious to find out what the NEC could do for you? Please contact Steven Smit or Joost van Dam on telephone number +31 (0)33 433 0131.

De Netherlands Export Combinatie organized in collaboration with the Task Force Health Care a matchmaking event at the congresstival World of Health Care in September 2018. Several Dutch companies in the Life Sciences & Health sector spoke with high-level representatives from Brazil, Colombia, Germany, France, Scandinavia, Ukraine, Indonesia, India and the USA about possible partnerships.


The Dutch Life Sciences and Health sector is internationally known. Not only because of  technological and other innovations, but because it performs very well sector wide. It is with good reason the Netherlands ranks number 1 in the Euro Health Consumer Index for five years already. This was confirmed by the enthusiasm of the country delegations. These were impressed by the developments in among others e-Health, Hospital Design & Build, Medical Devices, Public Health and Medical Technology. Hopefully this will bring about more internationalisation of the Dutch Life Sciences and Health sector.


De NEC would like to thank the participants of the matchmaking and the Task Force Health Care. We are already looking forward to the World of Health Care in 2019, see you then!

The Netherlands Export Combination organised in April 2018 a Holland Pavilion at the Food and Hotel Asia. The fair took place from 24th-27th April in Singapore. For the second time the NEC organised a collective participation to this fair.

During the fair the agricultural council of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Singapore organised a network reception to strengthen the economic bonds between both countries in the sector.

The Holland Pavilion at the FHA Singapore 2018 had seventeen participating Dutch companies. Besides the Pavilion another nine Dutch companies were present elsewhere at the fair. The fair was well visited all four days, this edition existed of 3,500 exhibitors coming from 76 countries with over 81,000 international visitors.

We can look back on a successful fair, where the Dutch companies were able to introduce their products to the Asian market.

Are you thinking about participating in 2020? Please get in contact with Carianne de Boer. The FHA HoReCa will take place from 3rd-6th March 2020, the FHA Food & Beverage will take place from 31st March to 3rd April 2020.

Following previous succesful editions of the Growtech Eurasia, the NEC organised once more a Holland Pavilion at this fair in Antalya, Turkey. The fair took place from 29th November to 2nd December and a total of 7 horti companies took place in the Holland Pavilion.

The Growtech Eurasia is focussed on the Turkish market and its large hinterland and the fair is also very internationally oriented. Among others exhibitors and visitors from the neighbouring European countries, the Middle East and North Africa came to the fair. The fair has seen a stark growth in the past couple of years and the number of visitors, exhibitors and amount of m2 exhibiting space increases annually.

During the fair both new and existing contacts were coming from several countries. In particular many parties from Iran attended the fair and visited the Pavilion following the business matchmaking events from the incoming trade mission from Iran.

Due to the success and the high level of interest from the Netherlands for the Growtech Eurasia 2018, the NEC will organise in 2018 once again a Holland Pavilion at this fair. If you’d like to obtain further information about the fair and possibilities for participation in the Holland Pavilion 2018, please get in contact with Joost van Dam

The Netherlands Export Combination (NEC) organised a Holland Pavilion at the SIAL Middle East (SIAL ME), a fair which took place from 12th-14th December 2017, in Abu Dhabi. The SIAL ME is part of the SIAL network, a leading worldwide network of shows focussed on the food- and drinks industry.

By participating in the Holland Pavilion the exhibiting companies got the opportunity to meet, together with partner companies, potential business relations and to build several business contacts. In the middle of the pavilion a lounge was created, which is a place where pavilion participating companies could hold conversations. In cooperation with the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Dubai some extra Holland branding was offered, e.g. via a flyer (which was handed to pavilion visitors) and a banner. This was all done to create extra promotion and awareness of the Holland Pavilion.

Some statistics about the SIAL ME 2017:

  • Number of exhibitors: 900+
  • National pavilions: 30+
  • Number of visitors: 16.000+
  • Number of VIP top buyers: 500

For further information about the SIAL ME, please get in contact with Joost van Dam.

The Netherlands Export Combination once again organised in September 2017 a Holland Pavilion at the Maison et Objet fair, which took place from 8th to 12th September 2017. The Maison et Objet is a prestigious design fair which takes place twice a year. With over 3.100 exhibitors and over 80.000 visitors this fair is one of the biggest fairs globally.

This year the Holland Pavilion was located in Hall 7, the design hall. The design pavilion offered designers and designing companies the opportunity to present themselves, to meet potential clients and to make new business contacts.


The Holland Pavilion was situated in the middle of the hall’s design area and was very well visible due to the high stand designs (5 meters tall). Eighteen Dutch designers and designing companies participated in the Pavilion. The busiest fair days were Saturday and Monday, and these days meant all help was welcome to be able to speak with the amount of interested people visiting the Pavilion.

A network reception was organised on Saturday 9th September in cooperation with the Embassy of the Netherlands in Paris. During the network event the Dutch exhibitors of the Holland Pavilion got the opportunity to get in contact with the Embassy’s guests, the Atelier Néerlandais, potential buyers, visitors and other exhibitors.


To get further information about the fair, please get in contact with Joost van Dam

The successful fair – Greentech 2018 took place from Tuesday the 12th of June till Thursday the 14th. The Greentech is the international trade fair with horticulture products and solutions, inspiring sessions on cutting edge topics and an in-depth look at the technology of the future, where you gain an overview of business opportunities in horticulture and can make informed, investment decisions. Beside several Dutch companies and multiple international companies, the Netherlands Export Combination was also represented with their own stand.


Alongside gaining knowledge on new horticultural technologies, the NEC was also present to discuss the latest business opportunities in foreign countries, successful exhibitions with Dutch pavilion possibilities and outgoing trade missions to prosperous countries.


Would you like to have further information regarding our activities?  Please get in contact with Joost van Dam.

The Netherlands Export Combination organised a Holland Lounge at the Iran Food Bev Tec in June at the Iran Agrofood fair in Tehran. This lounge was organised by the commissioning of the Topsector Agri & Food and in collaboration with East West Trade.

The Holland Lounge was particularly focussed on the Dutch potato sector, a sector which sees an increasing interest and demand for know-how in Iran. During the fair the agricultural council of the Dutch embassy in Tehran organised a network reception to strengthen the economical bonds between both countries in this sector.

Several presentations and seminars about the Dutch potato sector were given in the Holland Lounge to interested Iranian companies and institutes, to show what the Dutch potato sector could mean to the Iranian potato sector.

The Holland Pavilion at the Iran Food Bev Tec consisted of seven participating companies. Besides the Pavilion there were several other Dutch companies attending the fair with their own stand. The fair was well visited on all fair days.

We can look back on a successful fair, on which the Dutch companies were able to introduce their products to the Iranian market and where the Iranian potato sector gained more knowledge and awareness about the Dutch potato sector.

Would you like to have further information about this fair? Please get in contact with mister Joost van Dam.

The NEC is the Dutch agent for various international trade organisations. Dutch companies that want to participate in or have questions about one of these shows can be assisted by us. The NEC ensures that all matters, from the contract to the furnishing of the stand, are taken care of by the relevant trade organisation. A Holland Pavilion will also be constructed at a number of these shows. These shows can be found under “Upcoming trade shows”. Below is a list of trade shows represented by the NEC:

  • Food and Hotel Asia, Singapore (Overseas Exhibition Services Ltd)
  • FHC China (Overseas Exhibition Services Ltd)
  • HOFEX (Overseas Exhibition Services Ltd)
  • F&H Vietnam (Overseas Exhibition Services Ltd)
  • Zuid Korea (SFH) (Overseas Exhibition Services Ltd)
  • F&H Indonesia (Overseas Exhibition Services Ltd)
  • ICFF New York (Reed)
  • Agroexpo Eurasia Izmir (Orion Ltd)
  • AgraME (Informa Exhibitions)
  • Saudi Agriculture (Riyad Exhibitions Company)
  • Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture (Turret Media)


You can contact us for more information about these trade shows and the application forms for participation with an individual or collective stand.

The NEC advises in international business processes and assists entrepreneurs in their export approach. The NEC also implements various subsidy projects for the Dutch government. These services are available to companies that are registered with the Dutch Chamber of Commerce.

In addition, the NEC also advises foreign companies wishing to enter the Dutch market or wanting to become more involved in the market.

Since its initiation, the NEC has administered the “Starters International Business” (SIB) export subsidy. This subsidy was established by the RVO for starting exporters or exporters who wish to enter a new market. The NEC has been designated as administrators of this initiative because of its substantial experience in international business. NEC consultants have conducted over 200 SIB projects in various sectors. This settlement is available once and free of charge for Dutch merchants.

As part of the SIB subsidy, Dutch companies may request a mission voucher which is made available by the RVO. This voucher has a maximum value of € 1,500 excl. VAT and can be used as a discount for participation in a collective trade mission or trade show. The voucher can be used for participation in trade missions and trade shows that are organised by the NEC. A voucher may be requested once per year, per company. This subsidy initiative has an annual limit, so: first come first serve.

Would you like to know if you qualify for a mission voucher or export advice? Do you have any other questions? Please contact us for more information

The NEC may also offer advice pertaining to other sources of funding such as Partners for International Business (PIB) and the subsidy regulation for demonstration projects, feasibility studies and preparatory studies for investments (DHI).

4-step plan
You do not qualify for an export subsidy but would like individual advice for your international plans? The NEC has developed a 4-step plan that allows you to enter the Dutch or international market. The 4 steps are as follows: market research, partner selection, visiting the market, follow-up. The plan provides a structured yet practical approach to finding and interpreting market information and finding and selecting suitable buyers, such as agents, distributors and partners.
During this process, the following questions will be answered:
• How do I enter a particular market?
• Who are the most important contacts for me in the sector?
• What are the trends and developments in my sector in this region?
• Which potential partners are there in the market?
• Are intermediaries or end customers in the region interested in my product?
• Is there a party interested in bringing my products to the market?

An NEC advisor would be happy to discuss what your possibilities are within the “4-step plan” with you. Contact us


Please read below for more information regarding the 4 steps:

The first step is market research. This can consist of a comparison of countries or a specific agricultural and market analysis. A strategy for entering the market in a particular country will be established. In conducting this research, the NEC makes active use of its international network such as local network partners, local branch organisations, local governments, and others. The research results are reported and discussed. If desired, a concrete action plan for the following step(s) will also be prepared.

As second step, a profile of the potential partner(s) will be created. This profile is then used by the NEC in actively creating a long list of potential customers, business contacts, partnership firms and so on. Together, the long list is reviewed and a shortlist is created of selected companies that meet the profile best.

The companies on the short list (from step 2) will be actively approached in step 3 through the channels appropriate to the specific country. Discussions with interested companies will be further developed and visits brought to the market in question. The visit is performed solely by the NEC or jointly with the Dutch party.
Interested companies are sought out during the visit. After the trip, the discussions are evaluated and a strategy determined that ultimately will lead to the appointment of the agent or distributor or the signing of a sales contract with an end consumer. The NEC then, in mutual agreement, develops the contracts which thereafter can be signed.

As a final step, measures are taken to ensure that the appointed partner is actively working for you and will continue to do so. Actions may also be carried out relating to the internal organisation, certifications, promotional materials, translations, pricing structure, payment terms, delivery terms, quotes, specifications, adaptations, keeping the distributor on his/her toes, and similar.

The NEC organises annual conferences and courses regarding doing business in an international context for the front and back office, export managers and the organisation’s management. In doing so, the NEC works with branch parties, knowledgeable institutions or the Dutch government.

 Topics that will be covered during such trainings:

  • Selecting your business partner;
  • Successful participation in trade shows;
  • International sales pitch training;
  • Successful participation in a trade mission;
  • How to organise your (international) growth.

If you are interested in jointly organising a conference, please contact us.