Statistics Netherlands (CBS) enables people to have debates on social issues on the basis of reliable statistical information.


The mission of CBS is to publish reliable and coherent statistical information which responds to the needs of Dutch society. The responsibility of CBS is twofold: firstly, to compile (official) national statistics and secondly to compile European (community) statistics.

Corporate news

More up-to-date information about Statistics Netherlands (CBS) can be found under 'corporate news' (see right column). This includes articles about new services, new products, international developments and events organised by CBS.

Scope of activities

The information published by CBS deals with subjects directly affecting the lives of Dutch citizens. These include economic growth, consumer prices, crime but also leisure.

CBS and the law

The Statistics Netherlands Act constitutes the legal basis for CBS. In addition, CBS has Regulations of the board.

In addition, statutory provisions and acts regarding data supply include (Dutch only): 

The Personal Data Protection Act (Wbp) addresses the handling of personal data. Furthermore, CBS has formulated its own code of conduct.

Autonomous administrative body

As of 3 January 2004, CBS has the status of an autonomous administrative body (in Dutch: ZBO). This means that CBS performs public service tasks, but operates independently and not under the direct authority of a Dutch ministry. The Minister of Economic Affairs is politically responsible for relevant legislation, budget and conditions. CBS is financed from the state budget.


View the organisation chart (pdf)

Advisory Council

CBS has an Advisory Council. As stipulated by the Statistics Netherlands Act, the Advisory Council’s main task is to provide the Director General with solicited and unsolicited advice about the performance of his tasks and the exercise of his powers. When the position of Director General becomes vacant, another task of the Advisory Council is to make a recommendation to the Minister

Annual reports and annual plans


CBS was founded on 9 January 1899.

By the end of the 19th century, there was a growing demand for statistical information. The Dutch government felt the need to exert more control over society. The large-scale industrialisation process had given rise to social malpractices. Statistical data had to provide a solid basis for future policy initiatives to reduce social inequality. Various ministries kept statistics, but these were often incoherent, incomplete and inaccurate. Therefore, the government decided to establish Statistics Netherlands (CBS) with collecting, processing and publishing of reliable statistical data as its main priorities.

Ever since 1899, CBS has gradually transformed into a modern, innovative organisation which actively responds to the needs of Dutch society. CBS shares its information with other levels of government, politics, universities, media and the private sector.