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Netherlands — Gun Facts, Figures and the Law

StockpilesGun Numbers

Civilian Guns

Number of Privately Owned Firearms

ChartThe estimated total number of guns (both licit and illicit) held by civilians in the Netherlands is

2017: 442,0001
2007: 510,0002

Rate of Civilian Firearm Possession per 100 Population

ChartThe estimated rate of private gun ownership (both licit and illicit) per 100 people in the Netherlands is

2017: 2.601
2007: 3.92

Number of Privately Owned Firearms - World Ranking

In a 2007 comparison of the number of privately owned guns in 178 countries, the Netherlands ranked at No. 783

Rate of Privately Owned Firearms per 100 Population - World Ranking

In a 2007 comparison of the rate of private gun ownership in 178 countries, the Netherlands ranked at No. 1122

Proportion of Adults Living in a Home With a Gun

In the Netherlands, the percentage of adults living in a household with a firearm is reported to be

2015: 1%4

Proportion of Households with Firearms

ChartIn the Netherlands, the percentage of households with one or more guns is reported to be

2005: 4.8%5
1999/2003: 1.7%
1995/98: 2.3%
1992: 1.9%6
1992/94: 2.0%5
1989: 2.0%

Proportion of Households with Rifles

In the Netherlands, the percentage of households with one or more rifles is reported to be

1992: 0.7%6

Proportion of Households with Shotguns

In the Netherlands, the percentage of households with one or more shotguns is reported to be

1992: 0.0%6

Proportion of Households with Handguns

ChartIn the Netherlands, the percentage of households with one or more handguns is reported to be

2005: 1.3%5
1999/2003: 0.8%
1995/98: 0.9%
1992/94: 1.4%5 6
1989: 0.9%

Number of Registered Firearms

ChartThe number of registered guns in the Netherlands is reported to be

2017: 205,3471
2007: 330,0002

Rate of Registered Firearms per 100 Population

The rate of registered guns per 100 people in the Netherlands is 2.027

Estimated Number of Illicit Firearms

ChartUnlawfully held guns cannot be counted, but in the Netherlands there are estimated to be

2017: 236,6531
2005: 85,000 - 125,0008

Estimated Rate of Illicit Firearms per 100 Population

Unlawfully held guns cannot be counted, but in the Netherlands the rate of illicit firearms per 100 people is estimated to be 0.777

Government Guns

Number of Military Firearms

The defence forces of the Netherlands are reported to have 108,6769 firearms

Number of Law Enforcement Firearms

Police in the Netherlands are reported to have 96,00010 firearms

ImpactsDeath and Injury

Total Number of Gun Deaths

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual deaths resulting from firearms total

2015: 7811
2014: 74
2013: 71
2012: 92
2011: 96
2010: 76
2009: 10712 13
2008: 93
2007: 90
2006: 94
2005: 113
2004: 114
2003: 123
2002: 122
2001: 136
2000: 130
1999: 145
1998: 131
1997: 133
1996: 143

Rate of All Gun Deaths per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of all gun deaths per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.4611
2014: 0.44
2013: 0.42
2012: 0.55
2011: 0.58
2010: 0.46
2009: 0.65
2008: 0.57
2007: 0.55
2006: 0.58
2005: 0.69
2004: 0.70
2003: 0.76
2002: 0.76
2001: 0.85
2000: 0.82
1999: 0.92
1998: 0.83
1997: 0.85
1996: 0.92

Total Number of Male Gun Deaths

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual male deaths resulting from firearms total

2015: 7111
2014: 70
2013: 62
2012: 84
2011: 81
2010: 69

Total Number of Female Gun Deaths

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual female deaths resulting from firearms total

2015: 711
2014: 4
2013: 9
2012: 8
2011: 15
2010: 7

Homicides (any method)

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual homicides by any means total

2015: 10414
2014: 123
2013: 125
2012: 145
2011: 143
2010: 144
2009: 175
2008: 176
2007: 164
2006: 159
2005: 197
2004: 223
2003: 247
2002: 224
2001: 264
2000: 223
1999: 23015 16 17 18
1998: 208
1997: 23715 16 17 18 19
1996: 240
1995: 29915 18 19

Rate of Homicide per 100,000 People (any method)

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of homicide by any means per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.4611
2014: 0.44
2013: 0.42
2012: 0.55
2011: 0.58
2010: 0.46
2009: 1.06
2008: 1.07
2007: 1.00
2006: 0.97
2005: 1.21
2004: 1.37
2003: 1.52
2002: 1.39
2001: 1.65
2000: 1.40
1999: 1.457 18
1998: 1.32
1997: 1.527 18 19
1996: 1.54
1995: 1.918 19

Male Homicide Victims (any method)

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual male homicides by any means total

2015: 6220
2014: 93
2013: 69
2012: 95
2011: 93
2010: 90

Female Homicide Victims (any method)

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual female homicides by any means total

2015: 4220
2014: 30
2013: 56
2012: 50
2011: 50
2010: 54

Gun Homicides

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual firearm homicides total

2015: 3111
2014: 40
2013: 28
2012: 49
2011: 4914
2010: 33
2009: 5515 12 13 21 22 18
2008: 52
2007: 47
2006: 43
2005: 63
2004: 6715 12 13 21 18
2003: 7515 12 13 21
2002: 80
2001: 91
2000: 81
1999: 89
1998: 74
1997: 78
1996: 86

Rate of Gun Homicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of firearm homicide per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.1811
2014: 0.24
2013: 0.17
2012: 0.29
2011: 0.29
2010: 0.20
2009: 0.337 21 18
2008: 0.32
2007: 0.29
2006: 0.26
2005: 0.39
2004: 0.417 21 18
2003: 0.467 21
2002: 0.50
2001: 0.57
2000: 0.51
1999: 0.56
1998: 0.47
1997: 0.50
1996: 0.55
1994: 0.3623

Proportion of Homicides Committed With a Gun

ChartIn the Netherlands, the percentage of homicides committed with a firearm is reported to be

2011: 34%22 24
2010: 23%
2009: 27%
2008: 25%
2007: 28%
2006: 24%
2005: 31%
2004: 29.9%18

Male Gun Homicide Victims

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual male firearm homicides total

2015: 3911
2014: 39
2013: 23
2012: 42
2011: 36
2010: 27

Female Gun Homicide Victims

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual female firearm homicides total

2015: 111
2014: 1
2013: 5
2012: 7
2011: 13
2010: 6

Handgun Homicides

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual handgun homicides total

2015: 013
2014: 2
2013: 213 21
2012: 2
2011: 013
2010: 113 21
2009: 2
2008: 1
2007: 2
2006: 1
2005: 5
2004: 4
2003: 5
2002: 3
2001: 1
2000: 1
1999: 2
1998: 3
1997: 4
1996: 3

Rate of Handgun Homicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of handgun homicide per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.007
2014: 0.01
2013: 0.017 21
2012: 0.01
2011: 0.007
2010: 0.017 21
2009: 0.01
2008: 0.01
2007: 0.01
2006: 0.01
2005: 0.03
2004: 0.02
2003: 0.03
2002: 0.02
2001: 0.01
2000: 0.01
1999: 0.01
1998: 0.02
1997: 0.03
1996: 0.02

Long Gun Homicides

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual long gun homicides total

2015: 013
2014: 1
2013: 0
2012: 113 21
2011: 1
2010: 1
2009: 1
2008: 1
2007: 013
2006: 0
2005: 0
2004: 0
2003: 213 21
2002: 1
2001: 013
2000: 113 21
1999: 013
1998: 113 21
1997: 1
1996: 013

Rate of Long Gun Homicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of long gun homicide per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.007
2014: 0.01
2013: 0.00
2012: 0.017 21
2011: 0.01
2010: 0.01
2009: 0.01
2008: 0.01
2007: 0.007
2006: 0.00
2005: 0.00
2004: 0.00
2003: 0.017 21
2002: 0.01
2001: 0.00
2000: 0.01
1999: 0.007
1998: 0.017 21
1997: 0.01
1996: 0.007

Gun Homicides (Other)

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual gun homicides (other) total

2015: 3113
2014: 37
2013: 2613 21
2012: 46
2011: 48
2010: 31
2009: 38
2008: 35
2007: 37
2006: 30
2005: 49
2004: 49
2003: 49
2002: 59
2001: 68
2000: 64
1999: 73
1998: 54
1997: 58
1996: 68

Rate of Gun Homicide (Other) per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of gun homicide (other) per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.187
2014: 0.22
2013: 0.157 21
2012: 0.27
2011: 0.29
2010: 0.19
2009: 0.23
2008: 0.21
2007: 0.23
2006: 0.18
2005: 0.30
2004: 0.30
2003: 0.30
2002: 0.37
2001: 0.42
2000: 0.40
1999: 0.46
1998: 0.34
1997: 0.37
1996: 0.44

Suicides (any method)

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual suicides by any means total

2015: 1,87125
2014: 1,839
2013: 1,854
2012: 1,753
2011: 1,647
2010: 1,600
2009: 1,525
2008: 1,435
2007: 1,353
2006: 1,524
2005: 1,572
2004: 1,514
2003: 1,500
2002: 1,567
2001: 1,473
2000: 1,500
1999: 1,51725 26
1998: 1,51925
1997: 1,570
1996: 1,577

Rate of Suicide per 100,000 People (any method)

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of suicide by any means per 100,000 population is

2015: 11.0411
2014: 10.90
2013: 11.03
2012: 10.48
2011: 9.89
2010: 9.65
2009: 9.25
2008: 8.74
2007: 8.27
2006: 9.34
2005: 9.64
2004: 9.31
2003: 9.25
2002: 9.71
2001: 9.18
2000: 9.42
1999: 9.597 26
1998: 9.667
1997: 10.05
1996: 10.14
1994: 10.3027

Male Suicide Victims (any method)

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual male suicides by any means total

2015: 1,28011
2014: 1,250
2013: 1,305
2012: 1,186
2011: 1,136
2010: 1,124

Female Suicide Victims (any method)

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual female suicides by any means total

2015: 59111
2014: 589
2013: 549
2012: 567
2011: 511
2010: 476

Gun Suicides

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual firearm suicides total

2015: 4713
2014: 33
2013: 4313 28
2012: 4213 28 29
2011: 4713 28
2010: 40
2009: 52
2008: 40
2007: 42
2006: 50
2005: 49
2004: 45
2003: 46
2002: 39
2001: 43
2000: 47
1999: 51
1998: 53
1997: 50
1996: 55

Rate of Gun Suicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of firearm suicide per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.2811
2014: 0.20
2013: 0.26
2012: 0.25
2011: 0.28
2010: 0.24
2009: 0.32
2008: 0.24
2007: 0.26
2006: 0.31
2005: 0.30
2004: 0.28
2003: 0.28
2002: 0.24
2001: 0.27
2000: 0.30
1999: 0.32
1998: 0.34
1997: 0.32
1996: 0.35
1994: 0.3130

Male Gun Suicide Victims

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual male firearm suicides total

2015: 4511
2014: 30
2013: 39
2012: 41
2011: 45
2010: 39

Female Gun Suicide Victims

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual female firearm suicides total

2015: 211
2014: 3
2013: 4
2012: 1
2011: 2
2010: 1

Handgun Suicides

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual handgun suicides total

2015: 513
2014: 3
2013: 413 28
2012: 5
2011: 8
2010: 1
2009: 7
2008: 6
2007: 3
2006: 9
2005: 19
2004: 11
2003: 8
2002: 11
2001: 6
2000: 12
1999: 6
1998: 9
1997: 15
1996: 8

Rate of Handgun Suicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of handgun suicide per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.037
2014: 0.02
2013: 0.027 28
2012: 0.03
2011: 0.05
2010: 0.01
2009: 0.04
2008: 0.04
2007: 0.02
2006: 0.06
2005: 0.12
2004: 0.07
2003: 0.05
2002: 0.07
2001: 0.04
2000: 0.08
1999: 0.04
1998: 0.06
1997: 0.10
1996: 0.05

Long Gun Suicides

ChartIn the Netherlands, the number of long gun suicides is

2015: 413
2014: 1
2013: 413 28
2012: 6
2011: 3
2010: 3
2009: 6
2008: 3
2007: 3
2006: 5
2005: 6
2004: 6
2003: 9
2002: 3
2001: 013
2000: 113 28
1999: 5
1998: 3
1997: 2
1996: 7

Rate of Long Gun Suicide per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of long gun suicide per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.027
2014: 0.01
2013: 0.027 28
2012: 0.04
2011: 0.02
2010: 0.02
2009: 0.04
2008: 0.02
2007: 0.02
2006: 0.03
2005: 0.04
2004: .004
2003: 0.06
2002: 0.02
2001: 0.007
2000: 0.017 28
1999: 0.03
1998: 0.02
1997: 0.01
1996: 0.05

Gun Suicides (Other)

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual gun suicides (other) total

2015: 3813
2014: 29
2013: 3513 28
2012: 31
2011: 36
2010: 36
2009: 39
2008: 31
2007: 36
2006: 36
2005: 24
2004: 28
2003: 29
2002: 25
2001: 37
2000: 34
1999: 40
1998: 41
1997: 33
1996: 40

Rate of Gun Suicide (Other) per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of gun suicide (other) per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.227
2014: 0.17
2013: 0.217 28
2012: 0.19
2011: 0.22
2010: 0.22
2009: 0.24
2008: 0.19
2007: 0.22
2006: 0.22
2005: 0.15
2004: 0.17
2003: 0.18
2002: 0.15
2001: 0.23
2000: 0.21
1999: 0.25
1998: 0.26
1997: 0.21
1996: 0.26

Unintentional Gun Deaths

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual unintentional shooting deaths total

2015: 013
2014: 1
2013: 0
2012: 113 31 29
2011: 013
2010: 113 31
2009: 013
2008: 0
2007: 0
2006: 0
2005: 0
2004: 213 31
2003: 1
2002: 3
2001: 1
2000: 2
1999: 5
1998: 3
1997: 3
1996: 1

Rate of Unintentional Gun Death per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of unintentional shooting death per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.007
2014: 0.01
2013: 0.00
2012: 0.01
2011: 0.007
2010: 0.01
2009: 0.007
2008: 0.00
2007: 0.00
2006: 0.00
2005: 0.00
2004: 0.017 31
2003: 0.01
2002: 0.02
2001: 0.01
2000: 0.01
1999: 0.03
1998: 0.02
1997: 0.02
1996: 0.01
1994: 0.0132

Unintentional Male Gun Deaths

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual unintentional male shooting deaths total

2015: 011
2014: 1
2013: 0
2012: 1
2011: 0
2010: 1

Unintentional Female Gun Deaths

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual unintentional female shooting deaths total

2015: 011
2014: 0
2013: 0
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 0

Unintentional Handgun Deaths

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual unintentional shooting deaths by handgun total

2015: 013
2014: 0
2013: 0
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 0
2009: 0
2008: 0
2007: 0
2006: 0
2005: 0
2004: 0
2003: 0
2002: 213 31
2001: 1
2000: 013
1999: 113 31
1998: 013
1997: 113 31
1996: 1

Rate of Unintentional Handgun Death per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of unintentional shooting death by handgun per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.007
2014: 0.00
2013: 0.00
2012: 0.00
2011: 0.00
2010: 0.00
2009: 0.00
2008: 0.00
2007: 0.00
2006: 0.00
2005: 0.00
2004: 0.00
2003: 0.00
2002: 0.017 31
2001: 0.01
2000: 0.007
1999: 0.017 31
1998: 0.007
1997: 0.017 31
1996: 0.01

Unintentional Long Gun Deaths

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual unintentional shooting deaths by long gun total

2015: 013
2014: 0
2013: 0
2012: 113 31
2011: 013
2010: 113 31
2009: 013
2008: 0
2007: 0
2006: 0
2005: 0
2004: 0
2003: 0
2002: 113 31
2001: 013
2000: 0
1999: 0
1998: 0
1997: 0
1996: 0

Rate of Unintentional Long Gun Death per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of unintentional shooting death by long gun per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.007
2014: 0.00
2013: 0.00
2012: 0.017 31
2011: 0.007
2010: 0.017 31
2009: 0.007
2008: 0.00
2007: 0.00
2006: 0.00
2005: 0.00
2004: 0.00
2003: 0.00
2002: 0.017 31
2001: 0.007
2000: 0.00
1999: 0.00
1998: 0.00
1997: 0.00
1996: 0.00

Unintentional Gun Deaths (Other)

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual unintentional shooting deaths by firearm (other) total

2015: 013
2014: 1
2013: 0
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 0
2009: 0
2008: 0
2007: 0
2006: 0
2005: 0
2004: 213 31
2003: 1
2002: 013
2001: 0
2000: 213 31
1999: 4
1998: 3
1997: 2
1996: 013

Rate of Unintentional Gun Death (Other) per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of unintentional shooting death by firearm (other) per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.007
2014: 0.01
2013: 0.00
2012: 0.00
2011: 0.00
2010: 0.00
2009: 0.00
2008: 0.00
2007: 0.00
2006: 0.00
2005: 0.00
2004: 0.017 31
2003: 0.01
2002: 0.007
2001: 0.00
2000: 0.017 31
1999: 0.03
1998: 0.02
1997: 0.01
1996: 0.007

Gun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual shooting deaths in which the cause remains undecided total

2015: 013
2014: 0
2013: 0
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 213 33
2009: 013
2008: 113 33
2007: 1
2006: 1
2005: 1
2004: 013
2003: 113 33
2002: 013
2001: 113 33
2000: 013
1999: 013 26
1998: 113 33
1997: 2
1996: 1

Rate of Gun Death from Undetermined Cause per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of unknown-cause shooting deaths per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.007
2014: 0.00
2013: 0.00
2012: 0.00
2011: 0.00
2010: 0.017 33
2009: 0.007
2008: 0.017 33
2007: 0.01
2006: 0.01
2005: 0.01
2004: 0.007
2003: 0.017 33
2002: 0.007
2001: 0.017 33
2000: 0.007
1999: 0.00
1998: 0.01
1997: 0.017 33
1996: 0.01
1994: 0.0334

Male Gun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual male shooting deaths in which the cause remains undecided total

2015: 011
2014: 0
2013: 0
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 2

Female Gun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual female shooting deaths in which the cause remains undecided total

2015: 011
2014: 0
2013: 0
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 0

Handgun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual deaths by handgun in which the cause remains undecided total

2015: 013
2014: 0
2013: 0
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 113 33
2009: 013
2008: 0
2007: 0
2006: 113 33
2005: 013
2004: 0
2003: 0
2002: 0
2001: 0
2000: 0
1999: 0
1998: 0
1997: 113 33
1996: 013

Rate of Handgun Death from Undetermined Cause per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of unknown-cause handgun deaths per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.007
2014: 0.00
2013: 0.00
2012: 0.00
2011: 0.00
2010: 0.017 33
2009: 0.007
2008: 0.00
2007: 0.00
2006: 0.017 33
2005: 0.007
2004: 0.00
2003: 0.00
2002: 0.00
2001: 0.00
2000: 0.00
1999: 0.00
1998: 0.00
1997: 0.017 33
1996: 0.007

Long Gun Deaths from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual deaths by long gun in which the cause remains undecided total

2015: 013
2014: 0
2013: 0
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 0
2009: 0
2008: 0
2007: 0
2006: 0
2005: 0
2004: 0
2003: 0
2002: 0
2001: 0
2000: 0
1999: 0
1998: 0
1997: 0
1996: 0

Rate of Long Gun Death from Undetermined Cause per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of unknown-cause long gun deaths per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.007
2014: 0.00
2013: 0.00
2012: 0.00
2011: 0.00
2010: 0.00
2009: 0.00
2008: 0.00
2007: 0.00
2006: 0.00
2005: 0.00
2004: 0.00
2003: 0.00
2002: 0.00
2001: 0.00
2000: 0.00
1999: 0.00
1998: 0.00
1997: 0.00
1996: 0.00

Gun Deaths (Other) from Undetermined Cause

ChartIn the Netherlands, annual deaths by firearm (other) in which the cause remains undecided total

2015: 013
2014: 0
2013: 0
2012: 0
2011: 0
2010: 113 33
2009: 013
2008: 113 33
2007: 1
2006: 013
2005: 113 33
2004: 013
2003: 113 33
2002: 013
2001: 113 33
2000: 013
1999: 0
1998: 113 33
1997: 1
1996: 1

Rate of Gun Death (Other) from Undetermined Cause per 100,000 People

ChartIn the Netherlands, the annual rate of unknown-cause gun deaths (other) per 100,000 population is

2015: 0.007
2014: 0.00
2013: 0.00
2012: 0.00
2011: 0.00
2010: 0.017 33
2009: 0.007
2008: 0.017 33
2007: 0.01
2006: 0.007
2005: 0.017 33
2004: 0.007
2003: 0.017 33
2002: 0.007
2001: 0.017 33
2000: 0.007
1999: 0.00
1998: 0.017 33
1997: 0.01
1996: 0.01

ProductionGun Industry

Regulation of Firearm Makers

In the Netherlands, the manufacture of small arms, ammunition and/or their components is prohibited35 36

Small Arms Manufacture - World Ranking

In a classification of the world's small, medium and major firearm manufacturers, the Netherlands was ranked 'small'37

TransfersGun Trade and Trafficking

Firearm Exports

In the Netherlands, firearm and ammunition exports are limited by transfer control law38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48

Firearm Exports (Number)

ChartThe annual number of firearms exported from the Netherlands is reported by manufacturers to be

2017: 1,82349
2016: 2,107
2015: 1,156
2014: 1,053
2012: 10
2011: 692
2010: 472
2009: 1,176
2008: 1,865
2007: 787

Small Arms Exports (US$) - Customs

ChartThe annual value of small arms and ammunition exports from the Netherlands is reported by Customs to be US$

2016: 5,306,99550
2015: 6,407,547
2014: 17,731,887
2013: 6,558,332
2012: 9,719,782
2011: 2,094,12251

Small Arms Exports - World Ranking

In a comparison of the world's major/mid-level/minor/unknown small arms exporters, the Netherlands was categorized as 'minor'52

Firearm Imports

In the Netherlands, firearm and ammunition imports are limited by transfer control law38 53 40 41 43 44 45 46 47

Firearm Imports (Number)

ChartThe annual number of firearms imported to the Netherlands is reported to be

2017: 40,76949
2016: 11,510
2015: 12,137
2014: 25,297
2013: 500
2012: 1,412
2011: 132
2010: 6,469
2009: 6,671
2008: 2,250
2007: 2,554
2006: 2,978

Small Arms Imports (US$) - Customs

ChartThe annual value of small arms and ammunition imports to the Netherlands is reported by Customs to be US$

2016: 143,184,36350
2015: 113,745,888
2014: 117,378,527
2013: 105,467,718
2012: 89,708,16550 54 55
2011: 55,279,28551 56
2010: 88,000,00057

Smuggling Guns and Ammunition

Reports suggest that the level of firearm and ammunition smuggling in the Netherlands is moderate58

Regulation of Arms Brokers

In the Netherlands, the activities of arms brokers and transfer intermediaries are specifically regulated by law59 60 61

End User Certificates

Customs regulations in the Netherlands include38 certification of the intended end user of any small arms or ammunition transfer, and/or a written declaration of its intended end use

Transparency of Small Arms Transfers

ChartIn its annual Small Arms Trade Transparency Barometer, the Small Arms Survey compares public reporting among major arms exporting nations on a scale from strong to weak (25 to zero). In recent years, the Netherlands scored

2018: 20.0062
2016: 19.2563
2014: 19.2564
2013: 19.2565
2012: 18.5066
2011: 17.0067
2010: 17.0068
2009: 16.5069
2008: 17.0070
2007: 16.5071
2006: 16.2572
2005: 17.7573
2004: 13.0074

MeasuresGun Regulation

Firearm Regulation - Guiding Policy

The regulation of guns in the Netherlands is categorised as restrictive75

Firearm Law

Guiding gun control legislation in the Netherlands includes the Wet Wapens en Munitie 1997 [Arms and Ammunition Act],76 77 Algemene Douanewet 2008 [General Customs Law], Besluit Strategische Goederen 2008 [Decree on Strategic Goods],38 the Council Directive of 18 June 1991 on Control of the Acquisition and Possession of Weapons,78 79 the European Union Firearms Regulation of 2012 and the Common Position on the Control of Arms Brokering of 200380

Firearm Regulation Authority

Guns in the Netherlands are regulated by the Ministry of Justice and the local Commissioner of Police,81 and the European Commission79

Right to Possess Firearms

In the Netherlands, the right to private gun ownership is not guaranteed by law82 83 84

Restricted Firearms and Ammunition

In the Netherlands, civilians are not allowed to possess automatic and 'Category II' firearms, incendiary and armour-piercing ammunition85 86 87 88 89

Regulation of Automatic Weapons

In the Netherlands, private possession of fully automatic weapons is prohibited86 85 90 88 89 24

Regulation of Semiautomatic Assault Weapons

In the Netherlands, private possession of semi-automatic assault weapons is prohibited86 85 90 91 92 89

Regulation of Handguns

In the Netherlands, private possession of handguns (pistols and revolvers) is permitted under licence86 88 91 92 89 24

Law Regulates Long Guns

In the Netherlands, civilian possession of rifles and shotguns is regulated by law24

Gun Ownership and Possession

In the Netherlands, only licensed gun owners85 93 94 88 91 24 may lawfully acquire, possess or transfer a firearm or ammunition

Genuine Reason Required for Firearm Possession

Applicants for a gun owner’s licence in the Netherlands are required to establish a genuine reason to possess a firearm, for example hunting, sports shooting, collection93 95 85 96

Minimum Age for Firearm Possession

The minimum age for gun ownership in the Netherlands is 18 years93 85 96

Gun Owner Background Checks

An applicant for a firearm licence in the Netherlands must pass a background check which considers criminal93 96 24 records

Reference Required for Firearm Licence

In the Netherlands, third party character references for each gun licence applicant are not required84

Domestic Violence and Firearms

Where a past history, or apprehended likelihood of family violence exists, the law in the Netherlands does not stipulate84 that a gun licence should be denied or revoked

Firearm Safety Training

In the Netherlands, an understanding of firearm safety and the law, tested in a theoretical and/or practical training course is not required84 for a firearm licence

Gun Owner Licensing Period

In the Netherlands, gun owners must re-apply and re-qualify for their firearm licence every one year93

Limit on Number of Guns

Licensed firearm owners in the Netherlands are permitted to possess any number of firearms84

Limit on Quantity, Type of Ammunition

Licensed firearm owners in the Netherlands are permitted to possess any quantity of ammunition84 97

Firearm Registration

Civilian Gun Registration

In the Netherlands, the law requires98 99 100 101 that a record of the acquisition, possession and transfer of each privately held firearm be retained in an official register

Gun Dealer Record Keeping

In the Netherlands, licensed firearm dealers are required101 to keep a record of each firearm or ammunition purchase, sale or transfer on behalf of a regulating authority

State-Owned Firearm Records

In the Netherlands, State agencies are required99 102 to maintain records of the storage and movement of all firearms and ammunition under their control

Gun Sales and Transfers

Regulation of Private Gun Sales

In the Netherlands, the private sale and transfer of firearms is prohibited36

Regulation of Dealer Gun Sales

In the Netherlands, dealing in firearms by way of business without a valid gun dealer’s licence is unlawful36 103 104 92

Waiting Period for Gun Possession

In the Netherlands, the minimum wait for a lawful firearm purchase to be completed is undetermined84

Regulation of Gun Shows

In the Netherlands, gun shows and temporary firearm dealing events are not regulated84 in law

Storage and Transport of Guns and Ammunition

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Private

Firearm regulations in the Netherlands do not include84 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of private firearms and ammunition by licensed gun owners

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Dealer

Firearm regulations in the Netherlands do not include84 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition by licensed arms dealers

Firearm and Ammunition Storage Regulations - Government

Government regulations in the Netherlands include102 105 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition by state entities

Firearm and Ammunition Transport Regulations

Regulations in the Netherlands include106 107 105 41 written specifications for the lawful safe storage of firearms and ammunition while in transit

Marking and Tracing Guns and Ammunition

Firearm Marking

In the Netherlands, a unique identifying mark on each firearm is required by law108 109 110

Firearm Tracing

In the Netherlands, state authorities carry out111 110 101 112 recognised arms tracing and tracking procedures

Ballistic Record of Firearms and Ammunition

In the Netherlands, the ballistic characteristics of each civilian firearm and its ammunition are not84 recorded in a register

Carrying Guns

Carrying Guns Openly in Public

In the Netherlands, carrying a firearm in plain view in a public place is prohibited113 24

Carrying Hidden Handguns in Public

In the Netherlands, carrying a concealed firearm in a public place is prohibited113 24

Penalty for Illicit Firearm Possession

In the Netherlands, the maximum penalty for unlawful possession of a firearm114 is no more than nine months in prison or a fine115 116

Collection, Amnesty and Destruction Programmes

Firearms Surrendered and Seized

In the Netherlands, the number of firearms voluntarily surrendered, bought back or seized by authorities is reported to be

2013/16: 24,000117

Small Arms Destroyed

ChartIn the Netherlands, the number of firearms destroyed following amnesty, collection and seizure programmes is reported to be

1994/96: 143,632118
1991/2007: 143,632119

Destruction and Disposal Policy

In the Netherlands, it is not state policy102 120 to destroy surplus, collected and seized firearms rather than return them to the secondary arms market

MeasuresInternational Controls

Regional Agreements

European Union

As a member of the European Union, the Netherlands is bound by the provisions of the ‘EU Firearms Directive’ – the 2007 Legislative Resolution on Control of the Acquisition and Possession of Weapons of the European Parliament121 122

European Union Export Reporting

Under the European Union Common Position on Arms Exports, the Netherlands is bound to declare its transfers of military technology and equipment. Independent monitoring provides detailed comparisons of arms export reporting compliance across EU member states, and records that the Netherlands have submitted one or more national reports123 on its arms transfers

Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development

The Geneva Declaration on Armed Violence and Development, a diplomatic initiative aimed at addressing the interrelations between armed violence and development, was signed in 2006124 by the Netherlands.

Arms Trade Treaty

The Arms Trade Treaty has been signed and ratified125 by the Netherlands

United Nations Firearms Protocol

The United Nations Protocol against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition has been signed and ratified126 by the Netherlands

United Nations Small Arms Programme of Action UNPoA

UNPoA Commitment

On 21 July 2001, the Netherlands committed to a consensus decision of the United Nations to adopt, support and implement the UN Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects127

UNPoA Implementation Monitor Score

In its UN small arms Programme of Action Implementation Monitor (PoAIM Phase 1), the Small Arms Survey scored the Netherlands against its commitments to the PoA, then ranked it at No. 54128 129 130 131 among 159 Member States

UNPoA National Reporting

Under the terms of its 2001 commitment to the United Nations small arms Programme of Action, the Netherlands have submitted one or more national reports132 133 on its implementation of the UNPoA

UNPoA National Point of Contact

In the Netherlands, a National Point of Contact to deal with issues relating to the UNPoA has been designated134 133

UNPoA National Coordinating Body

In the Netherlands, a National Coordinating Body to deal with issues relating to the UNPoA has been designated134

UNPoA Civil Society Involvement and Support

In National Reports of the Netherlands submitted to the UN from 2001 to 2010, a history of substantive cooperation with civil society in support of UNPoA activities was apparent134 135 133

UNPoA International Assistance – Donor

Funds for UNPoA implementation have been donated133 by the Netherlands to other UN Member States

United Nations Small Arms Register

According to the United Nations Register of Conventional Arms, the Netherlands have declared136 its small arms exports in one or more annual National Reports on Arms Exports.

United Nations Membership

In the UN List of Member States, the Netherlands have been a Member State of the United Nations since 1945137

Wassenaar Arrangement

The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls and Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies lists138 the Netherlands as a Participating State

BackgroundCountry Profile

Conflict Profile

For a profile of conflict in the Netherlands, select the Link icon to open an external web page from the UCDP Conflict Encyclopedia at Uppsala University

Global Peace Index

To see where the Netherlands ranks, select the Link icon to open an external web page at the Global Peace Index


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