In the Netherlands, the importance of the theme of industry is experienced ever more strongly. Rightly so, according to theme director Arnold Stokking. ‘Industry is a factor which determines prosperity, creating jobs and generating 80% of Dutch exports. But industry can only survive if it continues to innovate. Therefore we consider it our job to aid industry in this process, implementing our knowledge in such fields as ICT, sensors and robotics.’
Various studies show that every euro invested in Research & Development more than doubles in profits, which is why so many companies in the Netherlands invest in development. When this is too expensive or too complicated to do themselves, such companies often engage our specialists. Our know-how and hi-tech equipment allow us to come up with innovative solutions, where we attempt to bring together as many of the parties involved as possible. By collaborating, we can develop more knowledge and ensure that whatever we create has a practical application.
Smart Industry is a practical example. Smart Industry stands for accelerating digitization of production processes. By optimizing production using ICT and new production technologies such as 3D printing , industry will be more efficient and produce higher quality. Smarter machines, robots and other parts of the production communicate and collaborate optimally. This optimisation occurs not only within companies but also cooperation between different companies in the value chain.
Netherlands has everything to make a success of Smart Industry . We have a strong manufacturing base of larger and smaller companies. We have excellent ICT infrastructure, good logistics, well-trained staff and collaboration is in our DNA. The development of new initiatives will be encouraged by setting up regional fieldlabs in which companies, educational- and research institutions work together.
Making the difference
Arnold Stokking is optimistic about the future of Dutch industry: ‘In the past the baby boom, natural gas, oil and the financial bubble led to prosperity in the Netherlands. Unfortunately, those days are now over. Industry is the new factor for ensuring prosperity, which is why industry has once again taken centre stage in the Netherlands. Our Dutch products are marketed across the world and those employed in industry are proud of the fact. I also worked in industry for twenty years and can’t think of anything more satisfying than working on hi-tech innovations that really make the difference.’