Government and region Zuid-Holland invest in strengthening the manufacturing industry

The Ministry of Economic Affairs & Climate is to support SMITZH, the regional programme for the smart manufacturing industry.

This was announced during the national Smart Industry Event in Bussum. State Secretary Mona Keijzer and the Province of Zuid-Holland, the Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague, InnovationQuarter and 8 regional Smart Industry field labs have confirmed the cooperation and made a €700,000 contribution.

The Zuid-Holland region has always had a large number of manufacturing industries. Shipbuilding, horticulture and aviation are now reaping the benefits. The application of new digital production processes and the use of robots are slowly gaining a foothold. That is important, because it offers the manufacturing industry a future. A group of innovative entrepreneurs is pioneering, which has resulted in many field labs in Zuid-Holland, including 8 on Smart Manufacturing.

SMITZH in favour of 1 clear point of contact.

The 8 field labs, InnovationQuarter, TNO, the Metropolitan Region Rotterdam The Hague, the Municipality of The Hague and the Province of Zuid-Holland joined forces at the end of 2017 and established Smart Industry Hub SMITZH: Smart Manufacturing Industrial Application in Zuid-Holland. This initiative ensures that entrepreneurs can address their automation questions to one clear point of contact. The Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate now joins them and delivers an additional impetus to the industry in the region.

Share knowledge and experience

Entrepreneurs that want to make their manufacturing processes more efficient can visit the field labs. The SMITZH programme has means at its disposal to answer their questions: ‘where do I start if I want to start working with Smart Industry', ‘what does it mean for my people’ and ‘what is the effect of automation on my production chain'. With the additional grant from the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate, the Authorities are investing more than €2.4 million in total in the manufacturing industry. The aim is to extend the programme at a later date with more public and private funding. The programme is to result in 2,500 new jobs in the Zuid-Holland manufacturing industry, and 100 businesses that work with new technologies.

Simplify hard work

One of the focal points of SMITZH is people-focused technology. That is technology that makes hard work easier. For instance, assembling a sensor or a satellite while wearing VR-glasses that project which part is to be fitted where. Or exoskeletons that make light work of heavy lifting. People-focused technology assists people in finding work and as such, also helps businesses fill their vacancies.


The 8 field labs in the region are field labs in which knowledge on all relevant technologies in the manufacturing industry is available. 3D-printing and IoT (RAMLAB), welding robots and sustainable deployability (Duurzaamheidsfabriek Dordrecht), robotization and artificial intelligence (RoboHouse), technology for automated composite production (SAM|XL), Big Data (Big Data Innovatie Hub), sensor systems (Dutch Optics Centre), digital production and digital twin (Digital Factory for Composites) and people-focuses technology with, among others, AR/VR (Dutch Growth Factory). The coordination of the SMITZH programme lies with the regional development company InnovationQuarter.