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The Contribution of Illegal Activities to National Income in the Netherlands


  • Brugt Kazemier

    () (Statistics Netherlands, The Hague, Netherlands)

  • Arjan Bruil

    (Statistics Netherlands, The Hague, Netherlands)

  • Annemieke van de Steeg

    (Statistics Netherlands, The Hague, Netherlands)

  • Marieke Rensman

    (Statistics Netherlands, The Hague, Netherlands)


Illegal activities such as smuggling, prostitution, and the production and sales of illicit drugs contribute to the national income of a country. In practice, however, they are not included in the statistics, because there are hardly any reliable estimates about these activities. Recently, Statistics Netherlands has started research into the share of illegal activities in the national income. This article presents the estimates for 1995 through 2008. The total contribution of illegal activities to the national income of the Netherlands increased from 1,800 million euro in 1995 to almost 3,500 million euro in 2008, equaling 0.6 percent of gross domestic product. Drugs accounted for more than 50 percent of the total income from illegal activities in 2001. In 2008, this was down to less than 40 percent, whereas finding illegal employment rose from about 10 percent in 1995 to 33 percent in 2008.

Suggested Citation

  • Brugt Kazemier & Arjan Bruil & Annemieke van de Steeg & Marieke Rensman, 2013. "The Contribution of Illegal Activities to National Income in the Netherlands," Public Finance Review, , vol. 41(5), pages 544-577, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:pubfin:v:41:y:2013:i:5:p:544-577

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    Cited by:

    1. Jozef Pacolet & Joris Vanormelingen, 2015. "Illicit Financial Flows: concepts and first macro estimates for Belgium and its 18 preferred partner countries," BeFinD Working Papers 0110, University of Namur, Department of Economics.
    2. Sárkány, Péter, 2014. "Illegális tevékenységek a svéd, a holland és a magyar statisztika alapján
      [Illegal activities as presented in Swedish, Dutch and Hungarian statistics]
      ," Közgazdasági Szemle (Economic Review - monthly of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences), Közgazdasági Szemle Alapítvány (Economic Review Foundation), vol. 0(2), pages 193-219.
    3. Philippe Adair & Oksana Nezhyvenko, 2016. "Sex Work Vs. Sexual Exploitation: Assessing Guesstimates For Prostitution In The European Union," Proceedings of Economics and Finance Conferences 4206791, International Institute of Social and Economic Sciences.
    4. repec:kap:ejlwec:v:44:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s10657-014-9451-2 is not listed on IDEAS


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