Top 10 most high tech countries for In the 15th century, the herring industry increased when herring schools shifted their routes to cross the North Sea, and the area began to prosper, especially with the help of continual technical improvements. The soil conditions in the Netherlands were not conducive to supporting a large population, so from a very early date, towns, such as Amsterdam, started importing grain from eastern Europe. The influx of grain reduced food prices and encouraged Dutch farmers to switch to specialty goods, including industrial crops like hemp and flax, which they could produce more efficiently and at a greater profit. This complex division of labor has led some historians to call the Netherlands the first modern economy. The increased prosperity coincided with the Dutch Revolt against Spanish rule. During the Middle Ages, the towns of the Netherlands had negotiated independent taxation policies with their foreign rulers. Through a series on innovations, often referred to as a financial revolution, the towns of Holland became creditworthy corporations and the Dutch, in general, learned to handle money very well. Top 10 most high tech countries 2016.