Kingdom of the Netherlands

sovereign state and constitutional monarchy

The Kingdom of the Netherlands (Dutch: Koninkrijk der Nederlanden), commonly called the Netherlands[f] is a transcontinental sovereign state made up of four countries who share the same constitutional monarchy.

Kingdom of the Netherlands
Koninkrijk der Nederlanden  (Dutch)
Motto: "Je maintiendrai"  (French)[a]
"Ik zal handhaven"  (Dutch)
"I will uphold"
Anthem: "Wilhelmus"  (Dutch)
Location of the Netherlands
Map of the four consitituent countries shown to scale
Map of the four consitituent countries shown to scale
and largest city
52°22′N 4°53′E / 52.367°N 4.883°E / 52.367; 4.883
Government seatThe Hague[b]
Official languagesDutch (de facto)[c]
Official regional languages
Recognised regional languages
Countries (non‑sovereign parts)
GovernmentSemi-federal parliamentary constitutional monarchy
• Monarch
• Prime Minister Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; refs with no name must have content
Mark Rutte States General -->
Independence from Spanish Netherlands
26 July 1581 (Declared)
30 January 1648 (Recognised)
19 January 1795
5 June 1806
• Annexation by First French Empire
1 July 1810
16 March 1815
• Secession of Belgium
4 October 1830 (Declared)
19 April 1839 (Recognised)
15 December 1954
• Total
42,508 km2 (16,412 sq mi) (136th)
• Water (%)
• 2017-2018 estimate
• Density
414/km2 (1,072.3/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC-4 (CET (UTC+1)
• Summer (DST)
Date formatdd-mm-yyyy
Driving sideright
Calling code
4 codes
  • +31      (Netherlands)
  • +297    (Aruba)
  • +599    (Curaçao / Caribbean)
  • +1 721 (Sint Maarten)
ISO 3166 codeNL
Internet TLD
5 TLDs
  • .nl  (Netherlands)[d]
  • .aw  (Aruba)
  • .cw  (Curaçao)
  • .sx  (Sint Maarten)
  • .bq  (Caribbean Netherlands)[e]

The member countries share a very high amount of autonomy. Foreign relations and defence are managed by the Constituent Country of the Netherlands.

Member states




The kingdom was formed in 1954 and is now made up of four countries:

European country:

Caribbean islands:

Special municipalities


The Caribbean Netherlands are special municipalities ('public body') of the Netherlands (see Category:Municipalities of the Netherlands) and consists of:

The Netherlands Antilles doesn't exist anymore and were made up of the six above mentioned Caribbean islands.

Constituent countries of the Kingdom of the Netherlands
Country Population
(1 Jan 2012)
Percentage of
Kingdom's population
Percentage of
Kingdom's area
Population density
  Netherlands[h] 16,748,205 98.32% 41,854 98.42% 396  
    European mainland 16,725,902 98.19% 41,526 97.65% 399 [8]
  Bonaire †‡ 16,541 0.10% 294 0.69% 46 [9]
  Sint Eustatius †‡ 3,791 0.02% 21 0.05% 137 [9]
  Saba †‡ 1,971 0.01% 13 0.03% 134 [9]
  Aruba 103,504 0.61% 193 0.45% 555 [10]
  Curaçao 145,406 0.85% 444 1.04% 320 [11]
  Sint Maarten 37,429 0.22% 34 0.08% 1,101 [12]
  Kingdom of the Netherlands 17,034,544 100.00% 42,525 100.00% 397  
† The islands in the Caribbean were once part of the   Netherlands Antilles. Aruba left the Antilles in 1986, while Curaçao and Sint Maarten did the same in 2010.
‡ When Curaçao and Sint Maarten left the Antilles in 2010, the other three islands then became part of the Netherlands and are now known as the   Caribbean Netherlands.

Suriname was also part of the Kingdom until it became independent in 1975.

  1. The official motto is in French. The literal translation into English is "I will maintain"; a better translation, however, is "I will hold firm" or "I will uphold" (namely, the integrity and independence of the territory).
  2. 2.0 2.1 Amsterdam is the constitutional capital of the kingdom and the Netherlands, while The Hague is the seat of the government representing both; Oranjestad is the capital of Aruba; Willemstad is the capital of Curaçao; and Philipsburg is the capital of Sint Maarten.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Dutch is an official language in all four constituent countries. Papiamento is an official language in Aruba[1] and Curaçao[2] and has a formal status on Bonaire.[3] English is an official language in Sint Maarten[4] and Curaçao[2] and has a formal status on Saba and Sint Eustatius.[3] Spanish, though not among the official languages, is widely spoken on the Caribbean islands. In Friesland, the West Frisian language has a formal status.[5] Dutch Low Saxon and Limburgish are officially recognised as regional languages in the Netherlands.[6]
  4. Also .eu, shared with other EU member states.
  5. .bq is designated, but not in use, for the Caribbean Netherlands.
  6. It should not be confused with the Netherlands, a constituent country of the kingdom.
  7. The population statistics for the Netherlands proper and the Caribbean Netherlands are for 1 January 2012. However, the statistics for Aruba are for 31 December 2011, for Curaçao for 1 January 2011, and for Sint Maarten for 1 January 2010.
  8. The population statistics of the Central Bureau of Statistics for the Netherlands do not include the Caribbean Netherlands (Source 1, 2). The number given here results from adding the population statistics of the Netherlands with those of the Caribbean Netherlands.


  1. Migge, Bettina; Léglise, Isabelle; Bartens, Angela (2010). Creoles in Education: An Appraisal of Current Programs and Projects. Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company. p. 268. ISBN 978-90-272-5258-6.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "LANDSVERORDENING van de 28ste maart 2007 houdende vaststelling van de officiële talen (Landsverordening officiële talen)" (in Dutch). Government of the Netherlands. 10 October 2010. Retrieved 30 July 2013.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Invoeringswet openbare lichamen Bonaire, Sint Eustatius en Saba" (in Dutch). Retrieved 27 December 2017.
  4. According to Art. 1 para 2. Constitution of Sint Maarten Archived 2016-03-25 at the Wayback Machine: "The official languages are Dutch and English"
  5. "Wet gebruik Friese taal" (in Dutch). Retrieved 27 December 2017.
  6. "Welke erkende talen heeft Nederland?" (in Dutch). Rijksoverheid. 11 January 2016. Retrieved 29 December 2018.
  7. As calculated in the table below
  8. Central Bureau of Statistics (Netherlands)
  9. 9.0 9.1 9.2 Central Bureau of Statistics (Caribbean Netherlands)
  10. Central Bureau of Statistics Archived 2012-11-13 at the Wayback Machine (Aruba)
  11. Central Bureau of Statistics Archived 2012-11-04 at the Wayback Machine (Curaçao)
  12. Department of Statistics Archived 2013-05-11 at the Wayback Machine (Sint Maarten)