Although GDP growth in the Netherlands has recently been stronger than in peer countries, the main contributor has been the growth in labor. If GDP is divided by labor, productivity growth appears to have been slower than in peers. This chapter discusses both exogenous and endogenous factors behind the disappointing productivity growth in the Netherlands and derives policy implications.
Advanced economies have been witnessing a pronounced slowdown of productivity growth since the global financial crisis that is accompanied in recent years by a withdrawal from trade integration processes. We study the determinants of productivity slowdown over the past two decades in four closely integrated European countries, Austria, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands, based on firm-level data. Participation in global value chains appears to have affected productivity positively, including through its effect on TFP when facilitated by higher investment in intangible assets, a proxy for firm innovation. Other contributors to productivity growth in firms are workforce aging, access to finance, and skills mismatches.
Total investment in Denmark has experienced a sharp slowdown following the global financial crisis. This slowdown has coincided with a decline in labor productivity and expansion of the current account surplus. This paper presents stylized facts summarizing the investment slowdown followed by an empirical analysis identifying its drivers. The results suggest that the decline in output has contributed to investment slowdown, consistent with predictions of the accelerator model. However, other factors, including high leverage and structural rigidities in product markets, also played a role.