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Key industries

East Netherlands has developed a strong focus in four sectors:


  • Wageningen and the surrounding Food Valley are home to a vibrant, highly educated, international research community dedicated to food, nutrition and agricultural sciences.
  • With more than 2,600 agri-food related companies, institutes and a community of more than 15,000 agri-food experts from over 110 nationalities, Food Valley is an international acclaimed R&D hotspot.
  • Wageningen University & Research especially has been at the forefront of global Agri-Food research and development for decades.
  • Companies like Unilever and FrieslandCampina chose Food Valley as a location for their R&D centers.


  • The Netherlands is a leading nation in High Tech and is home to original equipment manufacturers, skilled suppliers and innovative materials companies.
  • East Netherlands has its fair share of economic activities within this top sector, especially when it comes to High Tech Systems and Materials, photonics and micro- and nano-technology. The University of Twente has a focus on  High Tech research.
  • Examplementary is PHIX, which supplies the photonics industry with assembly and packaging services for Photonics Integrated Circuits.


  • Life Sciences has developed into a top economic sector in The Netherlands. East Netherlands is home to Health Valley, a dynamic clusters of businesses, universities, research institutes and projects.
  • Key players are Radboud University wich houses over 20.000 students with Raboudumc as a university hospital in Nijmegen.
  • Molecular medicine, diagnostics & imaging, nano-technology for point-of-care solutions, rehabilitation and medical robotics are among the key focus areas.
  • As a result international companies seek co-operation. Like Alamo Tissue Service, an American company that specializes in donor tissues opened a research center together with a Dutch partner.


  • With its concentration of companies active in the Energy and Environmental Technology sectors, the Apeldoorn/Deventer/Zutphen region in East Netherlands has a reputation as the Clean Tech Region. The Arnhem region focusses on energy storage, positioning itself a Battery Valley.
  • East-Netherlands as a whole is developing expertise in renewable energy, innovative fuel technologies, battery storage, smart grids and circular economy. Contributing to the international ambition to reduce emissions that are harmful to the environment.
  • LithiumWerks announced it will set up its R&D campus in Enschede, working together with the University of Twente to create a campus for energy storage.