Rules and regulations: changes for SMEs as of 1 January 2023

As of 1 January 2023, SMEs will have to deal with several new laws and regulations. You will have to pay more corporate income tax, and the minimum wage is going up by 10%. A price cap on energy means your gas and electricity bill will be lower. Here the most important changes for starting businesses as of 1 January 2023.

Please note: some changes are not yet final. If this is the case, we will mention it.

1. Shielding your visiting address in the Business Register (15 December 2022)

You will be able to shield your visiting address in the Handelsregister (Business Register) in case of a likely threat to yourself or others residing there. In anticipation of this new law, it is already possible to shield your visiting address. Take a look at the options.

2. Discounts cannot be misleading (1 January 2023)

Misleading prices will not be allowed from 1 January 2023. The new rules state that the original price from which the discount is deducted (the ‘from’ price) must be the lowest price that the seller offered 30 days prior to the discount offer. This rule has three exceptions:

  • progressive lowering of the price (promotions with a continuously increasing discount)
  • products that have been on the market for less than 30 days (introductory discounts)
  • perishables (with a ‘use by’ date)

3. Ban on flavoured e-cigarettes (1 January 2023)

As of 1 January 2023, there will be a ban on flavoured e-cigarettes. It will no longer be permitted to produce e-cigarettes with flavours such as menthol, vanilla, strawberry, cherry, and mojito. Only tobacco-flavoured e-cigarettes will be allowed. The Dutch government wants to discourage smoking, as is reflected in the many changes to the Dutch Tobacco Act over the past few years, and in the upcoming amendments. 

The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

4. Minimum wage up by over 10% (1 January 2023)

Do you employ staff? The statutory minimum wage is increased by more than 10% on 1 January 2023. Previously, the government had decided to increase the minimum wage by a total of 7.5%  in three yearly increments. This 10% increase replaces that plan. The AOW state pension and the Wajong benefit also go up. Do you pay your employees minimum wage? Then you have to start paying them more as of 1 January 2023. This raise is one of the government's initiatives to support buying power in the face of high inflation.

5. Childcare benefit no longer dependent on hours worked (1 January 2023)

Do you receive childcare benefit? As of 1 January 2023, the number of months the least working parent worked will now determine the amount of childcare allowance. Until 1 January, childcare allowance depended on the number of hours worked.

6. Excessive director's loan Act (1 January 2023)

The proposed Excessive director's loan Act (‘Wet excessief lenen bij eigen vennootschap’) aims to discourage dga's of bv's (director/major shareholders of private limited companies) from deferring taxes. Dga's have until 31 December 2023 to prepare for the new act by paying off debts they owe their own bv of over € 700,000 (not including private home debts). If you borrow more, you will pay 26.9% income tax (2022 rate).

7. Statement of payments to third parties changes (1 January 2023)

Do you sometimes pay persons who are not entrepreneurs (or employees) to do odd jobs or provide services? You will need to report these payments, called 'Uitbetaalde Bedragen aan Derden' or UBD (Payment to third parties) to the Tax Administration in a different way.

8. Untaxed travel allowance goes up (1 January 2023)

The tax-free travel allowance will go up to 21 eurocents per kilometre in 2023. As an entrepreneur, you can deduct this amount from your profit for business trips with your private car, motorbike or bicycle. As an employer, you may also give your staff a tax-free allowance of 21 cents per kilometre. This applies to commuting and other business kilometres by private means of transport. From 2024, the untaxed travel allowance will rise further to 22 cents.
If you are not sure if you should use your private car, or buy a business vehicle, read the article Company car or private? and calculate your costs. 

The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

9. Customary salary scheme changes (1 January 2023)

Do you run your own bv and do you work in this bv as director? As director/major shareholder (abbreviated to dga in Dutch), you are required to pay yourself a salary. This income tax requirement is called the 'gebruikelijkloonregeling', or customary salary scheme. Your wages must be at least the highest amount of these three amounts:

  • a fixed sum of 51,000 euros,
  • the wages of the highest-earning regular employee in your company,
  • the wages paid for the most similar type of employment.

Per 1 January 2023, the third amount changes to 100% of the wages paid for the most similar type of employment.

The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

10. Property transfer tax up on commercial properties (1 January 2023)


As of 1 January 2023, the property transfer tax (overdrachtsbelasting) is raised from 8 to 10.4% on commercial properties. The raise applies to commercial properties, second homes, plots designated for housing construction projects, and plots of undeveloped land.

The higher tax rate applies to all commercial property transactions for which the deed of delivery (akte van levering in Dutch) was signed after 1 January 2023. So, if you bought a property in 2022, but had not yet signed the deed of delivery at the notary's office, you will pay 10.4%. If you signed in 2022, the 8% percentage applies. The 10.4% rate also applies to second homes, land intended for residential development and plots of undeveloped land, among others.

The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

11. Corporate income tax goes up (1 January 2023)

Two changes mean you pay more corporate income tax (vpb, vennootschapsbelasting) in 2023.

Bracket limit lowered

As of 1 January 2023, the first tax bracket (the lowest taxation rate) will be lowered from 395,000 to 200,000 euros. Your profits of up to 200,000 euros will be taxed in bracket 1. Do you make more profit? Everything over 200,000 euros will be taxed in bracket 2. The taxation rate in bracket 2 is higher than that in bracket 1. In other words, because of the lowering of the bracket limit, a larger part of your profits may be taxed in bracket 2, and you will have to pay more tax.

Higher tax rate in bracket 1

The taxation rate for corporate income tax in bracket 1 will go up from 15 to 19%. This means you pay more tax over your profits of up to 200,000 euros. If you make more than 200,000 euros profit, you pay 25.8% tax over the exceeding amount. This percentage is the same as in 2022.

The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

12. Price cap on energy (1 January 2023)

In 2023, a price cap on energy will help you pay your energy bills. The price cap is for low-volume users, called kleinverbruikers in Dutch. Your energy bill states whether you are a kleinverbruiker. Or you can ask your net supplier. The price cap means you will pay 1.45 euro per m3 of gas up to a maximum of 1,200 m3, and 0.40 eurocents per kWh for electricity up to a maximum of 2,900 kWh. You pay the market price on any consumption excedding that. The price cap will be in force from 1 January through 31 December 2023.
The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*
Other measures include a 190 euros discount on your energy bill in November and December 2022, and the Energy cost contribution scheme TEK, for businesses that consume over 5,000 m3 of gas per year, and whose turnover consists of energy costs for at least 7%. The TEK scheme offers temporary support in paying energy costs between 1 Novermber 2022 through 31 December 2023, and will be executed by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency RVO. If you want to be kept informed about how and when the TEK scheme will be run, you can subscribe to the 'houd me op de hoogte' page on rvo.nl/tek.
You can also get information on the KVK Energieloket (in Dutch).

13. Private business ownership allowance down (1 January 2023)

Do you spend a minimum of 1225 hours per year on your business? You are eligible for the private business ownership allowance, or zelfstandigenaftrek in Dutch. This allowance is reduced by 1,280 euros in 2023 and becomes 5,030 euros. This is a greater reduction than previously announced. It means you will have to pay more tax. In the coming years, the private business ownership allowance will be gradually reduced to 900 euros in 2027.
The Dutch-language Inkomstenbelasting Calculator shows you what changes in your situation.
The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

14. Solar panels VAT-exempt (1 January 2023)

Do you sell and install solar panels on homes and outbuildings, such as sheds? As of 1 January 2023, you can no longer charge 21% VAT for this. The 0% VAT rate will apply to installing and selling solar panels as of that date. 

The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

15. Fiscal retirement reserve scheme ends (1 January 2023)

As of 2023, you can no longer put aside money in a fiscal retirement reserve scheme (FOR). Some 300,000 entrepreneurs currently use this scheme. These entrepreneurs can retain the amount they have put aside already and use it for their retirement, according to the 'old' rules. The FOR scheme was effectively a way to defer paying tax: you could put aside part of your profit, for example to buy an annuity, and would only have to pay taxes once you started receiving payments from that annuity. As of 1 January 2023, it will no longer be possible to put aside money in this manner. There are other ways of building up a pension that you can use. 

Are you ending your business while there is still an FOR amount in your balance? You will have to pay taxes over the amount in your final tax return.

The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

16. Introduction of APK diesel particulate filter test (1 January 2023)

If you carry out periodical technical tests (APK in Dutch) on diesel cars and vans, you will have to perform a diesel particulate filter test, using a special particle counter, as of 1 January 2023. This test determines whether or not a vehicle meets the new particle numbers requirements. The particle counter effectively measures whether or not the vehicle is equipped with a particulate filter.

17. Converting pension contributions to annuity more lenient (1 January 2023)

Did you build up a pension in your bv with a so-called oudedagsverplichting (ODV)? The government wants to make it possible to convert your ODV to an annuity, annuity account, or annuity investment account for 5 years after you have reached the state pension age. This measure will come into force with retro-active effect. Did you reach the state pension age plus 5 years after 1 April 2017? Then you can still convert the accrued pension contributions.

The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

18. Ban on office buildings that are not energy efficient (1 January 2023)

Do you own an office building? It must have at least a C energy label. This energy label requirement applies to office buildings of at least 100 m2 usable space, a minimum of 50% of which must be in use for office purposes. It applies to both offices in multi-tenant buildings and separate offices. Do you need tips on how to make your office energy efficient by 2023? Read the (Dutch language) article Energielabel C: volg 5 stappen en voorkom een boete. You risk a fine or closure of your office building if it has a D energy label. 

19. UPV: pay for plastic waste disposal (1 January 2023)

Do you produce or import plastic single-use products? Then the Extended Producer Responsibility, called Uitgebreide Producentverantwoordelijkheid (UPV) in Dutch, applies to you as of 1 January 2023. In practice, this means you have to help pay for the disposal of plastic litter, and that you encourage your customers to prevent littering. The UPV applies to single-use plastics often found in litter. The government sets a fixed price per single-use product brought onto the market. Every time you sell such a product, you pay this fixed price. Separate rules apply to several product groups. Tell your customers that the product is non-degradable and will cause harm to the environment, if they do not dispose of it in the correct way. 

Do you produce a product to which the UPV applies? Then you must report this to Rijkswaterstaat before 12 February 2023. The Dutch-language website afvalcirculair.nl will explain how to go about this. The UPV on single-use plastic productsis part of the EU ambition to reduce the plastic waste problem. Read more about the ban on single-use plastics.

20. Light moped drivers must wear a helmet (1 January 2023)

As of 1 January 2023, light moped drivers in the Netherlands must wear an approved crash helmet or speed-pedelec helmet. The helmet requirement also applies to drivers and passengers of electric scooters and mopeds. In short, all drivers and passengers of all mopeds, light, regular, or electric, will be legally required to wear crash helmets. 

A light moped can reach a maximum speed of 25 kilometres per hour and has a light blue registration plate. A regular moped has a yellow licence plate. 

21. New laws 1 April - 1 July 2023

These are the main new laws and amendments up until 1 July 2023.

1. Deposit on beverage cans (31 December 2022)

As of 31 December 2022, there is a deposit on beverage cans. Supermarkets are required to take in empty cans. Other businesses, associations, and foundations can apply voluntarily to act as collecting points. Starting 31 December, consumers pay 15 eurocents deposit on all cans of water, soft drinks, beer, or other low alcohol drinks.

Reasons to start a voluntary collecting point? You will save on waste disposal costs (in Dutch), support worthy causes, and help to prevent littering.

2. Certification for working with gas appliances mandatory (1 April 2023)

Do you do installation work on gas burning appliances, such as heating boilers, gas stoves, and hot water tanks? Or air supply or fume exhaust pipes? As of 1 April 2023, you will need a CO certificate to install, maintain or repair these appliances. Without a valid CO certificate, you will no longer be allowed to perform these activities. If you do, you are breaking the law. This legal requirement aims to prevent carbon monoxide accidents.

3. Shorter processing time for building projects with the Environmental and Planning Act (1 July 2023)

The new Environmental and Planning Act ('Omgevingswet') will make it easier to check if a building project meets all the requirements in one go. 26 existing regulations for space, living, infrastructure, environment, nature, and water will become 1 act. This should lead to faster and cheaper decision-making, simplification of rules, and an end to unnecessary rules. Once the Environmental and Planning Act comes into force, all municipalities must be connected to the digitised system 'Digitaal Stelsel Omgevingswet' (DSO).

The Environmental and Planning Act is expected to come into effect on 1 July 2023. 

This effective date is not yet final.*

4. Measures to improve quality in construction projects (1 July 2023)

To better safeguard the quality in construction projects and protect private and business customers, new measures will come into force. Construction companies will be required to hire the services of an independent and certified quality controller. The liability for hidden defects will change: the construction company is to remain liable for defects only discovered by the customer after the moment of completion. This is unless the construction company or builder did not cause the defects.

The law to improve quality in the construction sector ('Wet kwaliteitsborging voor het bouwen', Wkb) is expected to come into effect on 1 July 2023.

The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

5. Safety coordinator required for construction or demolition work (1 July 2023)

Do you work in construction? As of 1 July 2023, all construction and demolition works must appoint a Safety Coordinator Immediate Surroundings (Veiligheidscoördinator Directe Omgeving in Dutch). This coordinator sees to the safety and health of everyone in the immediate surroundings of the work. The Decree on construction works in the living environment (Besluit bouwwerken leefomgeving, Bbl) enters into effect at the same time as the Environmental and Planning Act (Omgevingswet).

6. Online sales of cigarettes and cigars banned

From 1 July 2023, you will no longer be allowed to sell tobacco and smoking products via a webshop. Smoking products are tobacco products or related products. This includes electronic cigarettes and refill packs/cartridges, with and without nicotine, and herbal products intended for smoking.

The effective date of this amendment is not yet final.*

How are laws made?

Sometimes a new law or an amendment is announced, and then does not go ahead, or the effective date is postponed. Why do some announced laws come into effect, while others do not?

Roughly speaking, the legislation process works like this. Ministries and the lower house of parliament ('Tweede Kamer') prepare laws. Once the lower house of parliament has approved a law, it goes to the upper house ('Eerste Kamer'). They can only accept or reject the law. If the upper house accepts the proposal, the government publishes the new law in the 'Staatsblad' (Government Gazette).

The effective date of a law can be mentioned in the law itself. Or the law may state that the government will determine the effective date by Royal Decree (Koninklijk Besluit, KB). The KB is published in the Staatsblad.

As the legislative process consists of many steps, it can take a while before a proposed law enters into effect. Changes in the composition of the lower and upper houses of parliament can also affect the progress. If there is a caretaker cabinet in place ('demissionair cabinet'), it will only handle current affairs and not take any major decisions. 

You will find all new laws and amendments that matter to entrepreneurs on Business.gov.nl, including the effective date and whether or not the law is final.

Business.gov.nl is an initiative of the Ministries of the Interior and Kingdom Relations (BZK) and Economic Affairs and Climate Policy (EZK).


Lees dit artikel in het Nederlands.

* Entry into force is subject to its passing through the upper and lower houses of parliament or proclamation of the Order in Council ('Algemene Maatregel van Bestuur', AMvB) or ministerial decree and publication in the 'Staatsblad' or 'Staatscourant' (Government Gazette, in Dutch).

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