WBSO (R&D tax credit)

The WBSO (R&D tax credit) of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy is intended to provide entrepreneurs with an incentive to invest in research.

With the WBSO, companies can lower the wage costs for R&D and other R&D costs and expenditures, such as prototypes or research equipment. You can deduct the tax benefit in your tax return to the Netherlands Tax and Customs Administration. Companies pay less wage tax and lower national insurance contributions, and self-employed individuals can make use of a fixed deduction.


Applications must be received one month before the start of the period for which this facility is required. The application of self-employed entrepreneurs covers the period from the date of submission to the end of the calendar year.

Purpose of WBSO

For the purpose of this act, research and development is defined as:

  • development of technically new physical products, physical production processes, software or components thereof;
  • technical-scientific research seeking to explain phenomena in fields such as physics, chemistry, biotechnology, production technology and information and communication technology.


Your R&D-development project must meet the following conditions before you can apply for the WBSO:

  • the proposed R&D activities take place in your own company;
  • the technological development is new to your organisation;
  • the development is accompanied by technical problems;
  • the R&D work has yet to take place (in other words, you must always submit a WBSO application in advance).

R&D tax deduction

You can find information regarding wage tax and social security contributions and R&D deduction on the website of the Netherlands Tax and Customs Administration (Belastingdienst). For questions about the settlement, please contact the Tax and Customs Administration helpline at (+31)800 05 43 or your regional tax office. The Customs and Tax Administration website features the address and phone number of your regional tax office.

More information

For more information about WBSO please consult the manual and infosheet on the publications page or go to WBSO: fiscale regeling voor research en development (information in Dutch).

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