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Netherlands Country Profile

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Reports &

Netherlands at a Glance

Location:Western Europe, bordering the North Sea, between Belgium and Germany
Climate:temperate; marine; cool summers and mild winters
Terrain:mostly coastal lowland and reclaimed land (polders); some hills in southeast
Resources:natural gas, petroleum, peat, limestone, salt, sand and gravel, arable land
Population:16,715,999 (July 2009 est.)

A Brief Profile of Netherlands

The Dutch United Provinces declared their independence from Spain in 1579; during the 17th century, they became a leading seafaring and commercial power, with settlements and colonies around the world. After a 20-year French occupation, a Kingdom of the Netherlands was formed in 1815. In 1830 Belgium seceded and formed a separate kingdom. The Netherlands remained neutral in World War I, but suffered invasion and occupation by Germany in World War II. A modern, industrialized nation, the Netherlands is also a large exporter of agricultural products. The country was a founding member of NATO and the EEC (now the EU), and participated in the introduction of the euro in 1999.

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