Emigration to border regions increases

21st February 2007, Comments 0 comments

21 February 2007, AMSTERDAM — Areas in Germany and Belgium close to the Dutch border attract a growing number of Dutch residents. Germany has become especially popular lately. About 5,000 Dutch move to the neighbouring countries every year, De Volkskrant writes.

21 February 2007

AMSTERDAM — Areas in Germany and Belgium close to the Dutch border attract a growing number of Dutch residents. Germany has become especially popular lately. About 5,000 Dutch move to the neighbouring countries every year, De Volkskrant writes.

According to the National Bureau for Spatial Planning, 59 thousand Dutch were registered as living in Belgium last year and 41 thousand in Germany.

The main reasons to move are the lower taxes and the cheaper house and land prices. The emigration wave to Germany increased in 2001, when a change to the law allowed Dutch citizens with homes in Germany to receive mortgage interest relief.

In the 1990s, the number of Dutch living in North Rhine-Westphalen and Lower Saxony was still on the decrease. But then many Dutch bought houses in Germany across the border from the Dutch Twente, Arnhem, Nijmegen or Southern Limburg. Even the cancellation of Eigenheimzulage (the financial incentive for homeowners) has not slowed the trend down.

“It is mainly the Dutch with higher incomes who find the living environment more attractive in Germany than in Holland”, Jan Krakers of Regio Twente said. “We are now trying to create residential areas in Twente that could compete with the German ones, especially around the cities.”

Meanwhile, much fewer Germans and Belgians live in The Netherlands than vice versa. There are 10 thousand Belgians and 18 thousand Germans officially living here at the moment and their number is slowly decreasing.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2007]

Subject: Dutch news

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