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Sectoral Partnerships - Pillar 1

Last checked on:
11 April 2024
Published on:
7 October 2022

Do you represent an enterprise established in the Netherlands? Do you want to improve sustainability in your value chain? A partnership with enterprises and organisations in your sector allows you to work together to tackle risks. The Sectoral Partnerships Pillar 1 subsidy programme supports you in completing one or more of the 6 stages in the due diligence process. Read more about RBC in the sector-wide cooperation programme.

Budget and application period

Start date:
Thursday 13 October 2022
End date:
Tuesday 26 September 2023
Total budget:
€ 9,000,000

For whom

The Sectoral Partnerships - Pillar 1 programme helps Netherlands-based companies applying the OECD guidelines improve sustainability in their value chains. These companies can apply for a subsidy in a partnership. A partnership must include at least 5 enterprises. Besides these enterprises, sector and civil society organisations can also participate in the partnership.

Would you like an initial consultation with one of our advisors? Please email us or call +31 (0)88 042 42 42.

Budget and duration

The Sectoral Partnerships - Pillar 1 programme is a 3-year subsidy programme with 2 rounds for project applications. Projects must have a minimum duration of 2 years and a maximum of 3.

For the first round, a subsidy of €9 million is available. For each partnership:

  • enterprises can apply for a maximum of €200,000 in one year, with a maximum of €600,000 for a 3-year project;
  • civil society organisations can apply for a maximum of €100,000 per year for each partnership.

Terms and conditions

  • You apply for a subsidy with at least 5 companies within your sector.
  • The lead company (applicant) and other companies are established in the Netherlands and operate in the same sector. The lead company is always part of the partnership.
  • Branch associations may participate as partners alongside the 5 participating Dutch enterprises.
  • Civil society organisations may participate as partners alongside the 5 participating Dutch enterprises.
  • To achieve the application's goals, all partnership members must cooperate. Each member in the partnership is a legal entity.
  • The companies in a partnership are active in a value chain that has a link with the Dutch market. The companies undertake their activities mainly in the Netherlands or primarily focus on the Netherlands. The value chain also has a link with one or more countries on the DAC List of ODA Recipients.

Supplementary terms and conditions

The lead company and other partners declare that they:

  • have read the FMO exclusion list and will not undertake any activity mentioned under parts 02 – 08 on the list as part of the project;
  • accept that partnerships within the sector do not replace each party's responsibility to apply due diligence.

Your project follows the guidelines for international responsible business conduct (RBC). We take RBC into account when assessing your subsidy application. Subsidy applicants must:

  • Follow the OECD guidelines;
  • Show how they carry out their activities following the OECD guidelines;
  • Carry out a risk analysis of social and environmental risks;
  • Show which measures their company takes to prevent or reduce these risks.

At the start of your relationship with us, we agree on RBC. For example, how and often do you report on the focus areas of your risk analyses?

After your application

You will hear whether we have approved your application within 13 weeks.

Submitting a progress report

If we grant you a subsidy, you must report on the project's progress.

Reporting changes

You must report any project, implementation and organisation change. For specific changes, you need our approval in advance. If you do not ask for our approval in advance, you risk losing your subsidy for the changed parts of the project or even the entire project.

Submitting a final report

On completion of your project, you must submit a final report.


Around the world, Responsible Business Conduct (RBC) risks and misconducts happen daily in the value chains of companies, such as:

  • harming the natural environment through pollution or reduced biodiversity;
  • violating human rights related to land acquisitions; or
  • poor working conditions in factories in producer countries.

Tackling abuses in international value chains is challenging. Dutch enterprises and civil society organisations cannot solve this on their own. But, they can amplify their impact on the value chains by collaborating. Efforts such as these ensure that due diligence (based on responsible business conduct policies) is better embedded in the business processes of Dutch companies. This has a positive impact on local manufacturing conditions in producer countries.

The Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO) carries out the Sectoral Partnerships - Pillar 1 subsidy scheme on behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.


Government Gazette, 23 September 2022 (in Dutch). The unofficial English translation will follow soon.

Questions about Sectoral Parnerships - Pillar 1?

Commissioned by:
  • Ministry of Foreign Affairs
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