Machinery most profitable Dutch export product

© Hollandse Hoogte
In 2015, the total export value of machinery and machine parts was almost 13 billion euros, equivalent to around 2 percent of GDP. These include chip manufacturing equipment and machines for the food industry. Data are based on a preliminary survey on top export products as reported by Statistics Netherlands (CBS).
Domestically produced natural gas is the second most successful export product. As reported earlier by CBS, agricultural products also have significant value for Dutch exports. Horticulture (flowers, plants, tree nursery products and flower bulbs) ranks third in the top 10 of largest export products. Other top 10 products in terms of highest value added include meat, dairy products, food preparation products such as baby milk powder, vegetables and potatoes.
The ten most profitable export products combined account for 48 percent of total export earnings from goods made in the Netherlands. In 2015, total earnings through exports (in value added) of the top 10 products amounted to 53.3 bn euros or 7.9 percent of GDP.
Most profitable products in Dutch exports, 2015
 Value added
Machinery and machine components12.85
Natural gas6.76
Horticulture (incl. flowers and plants)5.73
High-grade plastics5.4
Metal and metal products5.01
Food preparations (incl. baby milk powder)3.43
Vegetables and potatoes3.39
Petroleum products2.76

Increasing importance of machinery

Back in 1995 and 2005, machinery also took up first place on the list of top export products; it has played an increasingly large role in Dutch exports since then. Its share in total export earnings grew from 8.9 percent in 1995 to 11.5 percent in 2015. For example, exporters of chip manufacturing equipment have seen continually rising revenues, while natural gas and food preparations (e.g. baby milk powder) have likewise become much more predominant in Dutch exports over the past two decades.

Mineral fuels least profitable per euro

If all separate product groups are taken together, seven key groups can be distinguished which cover all Dutch domestic goods exports. These show that total earnings are slightly higher in exports of food and beverages than in machinery and equipment, although exports of the latter are higher in terms of turnover.
By comparing export earnings and export turnover, profits earned per euro of export turnover can be calculated as well. The highest profit per euro is found in exports of manufactured products and agricultural products (food, beverages, natural products and raw materials), namely between 65 and 73 euro cents.
Least profitable are mineral fuels (40 euro cents per euro of export turnover). This includes large volumes of petroleum derivatives (petrol and fuel oil) with a low value added in contrast with the lucrative exports of natural gas. The value added for these products is low because they are produced from crude oil that has to be imported, thus reducing profits on the Dutch export market.

Export revenue share in total export revenues from Dutch domestic products, 2015
Machinery and machine parts8.99.311.5
Natural gas3.66.56
Horticulture (incl. flowers, plants)65.85.1
High-grade plastics4.14.84.8
Metal and metal products4.84.54.5
Food preparations (incl. baby milk powder)
Vegetables and potatoes3.82.93
Petroleum products2.33.42.8

Composition of total export value Dutch-manufactured goods, 2015
 Export revenues (value added)Imports
Machinery and equipment22.422.9
Food and beverages25.413.9
Chemical products16.114.6
Natural products and raw materials17.39.3
Mineral fuels10.215.5
Manufactured products13.95.1
Transport equipment6.94.5