Ten public organizations, including the Brabant Development Company (BOM) and Brainport Development, will work together to better support entrepreneurs on the international market. On 22 January, under the watchful eye of Minister Sigrid Kaag for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation, they signed a covenant entitled ‘Trade & Innovate NL’.

The collaboration consists of seven regional development organizations (Amsterdam inbusiness, BOM, Brainport Development, Economic Board Utrecht, InnovationQuarter, Ontwikkelingsmaatschappij, OostNL, and Rotterdam Partners), RVO.nl, and the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, and Economic Affairs & Climate.

Trade & Innovate NL is a public cooperation in the internationalization of Dutch industry. According to the new organization, this is important because 32% of the Dutch earning capacity is based on exports. “At the same time, the world around the Netherlands is more turbulent than ever before, with major challenges in areas such as climate change, food security, health and sustainable energy use. Thanks to its good innovation climate, the world’s leading top sectors and its strength through cooperation between government, industry and knowledge institutions, the Netherlands can take leading positions in solving these challenges.

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Mayor of Eindhoven and chairman of the Brainport Foundation John Jorritsma sees the fierce competition in the world as an important reason to collaborate on trade promotion and innovation. “Let’s follow a single strategy for international entrepreneurship and public-private partnerships.”

The public parties that are now signing this covenant want to be able to achieve more in the partnership than as individuals. Minister Sigrid Kaag: “Competition with emerging economies is increasing. In order to maintain and strengthen our competitive position, we will have to join forces: public and private. It is good that we are taking another important step here today with the signing of the covenant between public parties – national and regional – that forms the basis for the establishment of Trade & Innovate NL.”

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Author profile picture Bart Brouwers is co-founder and co-owner of Media52 BV, the publisher of innovationorigins.com.