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Innovation and sustainability

Innovation and sustainability in the Dutch logistics industry

Important trends and developments in logistics

  • Changing customer expectations
  • Digitization and automation
  • Sustainability is a mandatory part of any logistics solution
  • E-commerce boom
  • New players with innovative new concepts enter the market
  • Reshoring production activities will have a long-term impact on supply chains in the future

Global megatrends have an impact on the strategy of companies. Combined with supply chain challenges new solutions are being developed by implementing new business models, technology and new ways of collaboration.

Finding innovative solutions for challenges is one of the key strengths of the Dutch logistics industry.

The future timeline of logistics

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  • Through 2023, demand for robotic goods-to-person systems will quadruple to help enforce social distancing in warehouses.
  • By 2023, 50% of global product-centric enterprises will have invested in real-time transportation visibility platforms.
  • Through 2024, 50% of supply chain organizations will invest in applications that support artificial intelligence and advanced analytics capabilities.
  • By 2025, more than 50% of supply chain organizations will have a technology leadership role reporting directly to the chief supply chain officer.

8 Logistics innovation and sustainability USP’s in the Netherlands


  1. Digital frontrunner
  2. Well developed logistics industry
  3. Need for Smart Logistics
  4. Extensive multi-modal network


  1. Triple Helix collaboration
  2. Supply chain collaboration

Dutch business climate

  1. Multilingual business community, easy to do business
  2. History of logistics innovations

Innovative and sustainable logistics in the Netherlands

The limited space here in the Netherlands drives the need for innovative and smart solutions.

Developments in the logistics like increased competition, new entrants to the industry and changing customer expectations are not unique to the Netherlands. A small country in which organizations connect easily both in terms of culture (eagerness to improve and constant questioning of the status quo) and distance (easy to get together). It’s an ideal base to develop and test innovations. The Netherlands is “the village of Europe”

Global players and many strong Dutch LSP’s create a logistics environment with endless possibilities.

The Netherlands: smart and sustainable logistics

0,25% of the world’s population

1% of the world’s production

3,7% of the world’s trade

Trade can only flourish thanks to the high-quality logistics systems we have built here together

Logistics is one of the priority sectors in Dutch economic policy. Government, business and academia work together to increase competitiveness, in business climate, education, infrastructure and innovation in logistics. Our key ingredient to success is open innovation through public private partnerships. Using new methods of research and innovation, we look for more efficient and sustainable solutions in logistics. And we share that knowledge with business and with education.

Together we are stronger. In the Netherlands many organizations exist that were founded with collaboration as the key driver.

Development of innovations over the years

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The role of HIDC

The Holland International Distribution Council has put innovation and sustainability high on the agenda as part of the 2020-2025 strategy. The logistics network of the Netherlands sees a role as a connector between members and providers of innovative and sustainable logistics solutions.

Insights in the following questions will be key:

  • What kind of innovations and sustainable solutions are there already?
  • What is not there yet and would we like to add to the ecosystem?
  • Which proposition do we have to further expand the ecosystem?

We will identify target companies to expand the ecosystem and will actively approach them. As a member organization promoting and representing the Dutch logistics industry we think in ecosystems and networks. For us innovation and sustainability means to connect with other organizations with the objective to create a win-win situation for both the organizations active in innovative and sustainable solutions and the HIDC member base.

Interested? Let’s get in touch!

More information about innovation and sustainability in the Dutch logistics sector you can find in our Propositions.

The limited space here in the Netherlands drives the need for innovative and smart solutions.