Netherlands

Flag of Netherlands (Click to Enlarge)
Map of Netherlands

Netherlands
capital:Amsterdam
geographic coordinates:52 23 N, 4 54 E
time difference: UTC + 1
daylight saving time:+1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October
note:The Hague is the seat of government; time descriptions apply to the continental Netherlands only, not to the Caribbean components

The Dutch United Provinces declared their independence from Spain in 1579; during the 17th century, they became a leading seafaring and commercial power, with settlements and colonies around the world. After a 20-year French occupation, a Kingdom of the Netherlands was formed in 1815. In 1830 Belgium seceded and formed a separate kingdom. The Netherlands remained neutral in World War I, but suffered invasion and occupation by Germany in World War II. A modern, industrialized nation, the Netherlands is also a large exporter of agricultural products. The country was a founding member of NATO and the EEC (now the EU), and participated in the introduction of the euro in 1999.


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