Welcoming international community
On a world map, the Netherlands is very small. The longest distance you can
drive from the north to the south will take about four hours. To the east the
Netherlands borders Germany, to the south Belgium, and to the north and west
the North Sea. Several features of the landscape will strike you immediately.
To start with, it is extremely flat. There are a few hills in the southeast corner
of the country, but even they barely infringe on the broad, unbroken expanse
of sky that is so characteristic of Dutch landscape painting.
Most people coming to the Southeast Netherlands will probably choose to live in the area nearby their work. However, Dutch transport networks are good and some prefer to commute from other areas.Southeast Netherlands is a part of the Netherlands, a small, but densely populated country with 16,7 million inhabitants. Its home to a wide variety of cultures, primarily in the larger cities. Most Dutch people embrace the country's cultural diversity, tolerances of differences, and receptiveness to foreign influences.
Dutch people are very open-minded and they will not be
offended if you do not behave according to the Dutch
manners. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, they will easily
be forgiven because the Dutch people will know you are a
foreigner. To help you understand the Dutch a bit better,
the Expat Guide Holland gathered some examples of
typically Dutch (cultural) behaviour.
- Meeting and greeting
- Private situations
- What to expect in the corporate environment
- Dress codes
- Helpful tips
Find out more on www.expatguideholland.com. A practical online guide for internationals (knowledge) workers moving to and living in the Southeast Netherlands. They provide information about the following themes: Formalities, Housing, Taxation, Finance & Insurance, Education & Careers, Personal & Social needs and Culture & Leisure.
Find out more about the Netherlands:
The Dutch education system
In almost every city district and village in the Southeast Netherlands, there are several primary schools. In the Netherlands, primary education begins at the age of 4. Secondary education starts after completion of primary education, usually at the age of 12 and generally continues to the age of 16 to 18. Children are obliged to go to school until the school year in which they become 16. The Southeast Netherlands offers plenty of opportunities for bilingual education. In bilingual schools, the lessons for several of the non-language courses are given in a different language from the pupil’s mother tongue. The two important objectives of bilingual education is to improve the pupil’s mastering of foreign languages and to give them a more international outlook.
There are also international schools, both primary and secondary. Located in the region are the International School Eindhoven, United World College Maastricht and the European School Mol (Belgium).
The Dutch Government is responsible for the administration of education, justice, policing, road construction and maintenance. It also provides social security benefits, care for the elderly and subsidies for housing and for the arts and culture, among other things. Government expenditure is largely financed from tax revenues. Most of the proceeds from social security contributions are spent on social security and health care. The Tax Administration is responsible for tax collection and social security contributions.
The Tax Administration collects through different channels. The wage tax is an advance tax payment for the income tax. In this way, it is prevented that taxpayers have to pay a single large payment for income tax and social security contributions once a year. The employer withholds the wage tax at the time the employee receives his/her salary.
The most important one for employees is the wage withholding tax. Everyone in the Netherlands who is in paid employment is subject to wage tax. The employer that pays the wages withholds the tax and pays it to the Tax Administration. These taxes consist of one amount made up of taxes and social security contributions. Social security contributions must be paid for the old age pension (AOW), surviving relatives benefit (ANW) and exceptional medical expenses (AWBZ).
Persons who have an income pay income tax. Individuals may receive income from different sources. Income tax takes into account the origin of the income and distinguishes three categories. These categories are known as ‘boxes'. The income in each of the three boxes is taxed at a different rate. The total of the tax owed in the three boxes is the income tax payable.
Fore more information about taxation visit the Tax Administration website.