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The VOC enjoyed huge profits from its spice monopoly through most of the 17th century.century to include the whole of the Indonesian archipelago, which would later become the modern Republic of Indonesia.In spite of the VOC's historical contributions, the company has long been criticized for its monopoly, colonialism, exploitation (including use of slave labour), and environmental destruction (especially deforestation).The government-backed but privately financed company was effectively a state in its own right, or a state within another state.In terms of exploratory maritime history of the world, as a major force behind the Golden Age of Dutch exploration and discovery (c.In terms of military-political history, the VOC, along with the Dutch West India Company (WIC/GWIC), was seen as the international arm of the Dutch Republic and the symbolic power of the Dutch Empire.The VOC was historically a military-political-economic complex rather than a pure trading company (or shipping company).
The Portuguese Empire therefore became an appropriate target for Dutch military incursions.1590s–1720s), the VOC-funded exploratory voyages such as those led by Willem Janszoon (Duyfken), Henry Hudson (Halve Maen) and Abel Tasman revealed largely unknown landmasses to the western world. 1570s–1670s), the VOC navigators and cartographers helped shape geographical knowledge of the modern world as we know them today.The commercial networks of Dutch transnational companies, like the VOC and WIC/GWIC, provided an infrastructure which was accessible to people with a scholarly interest in the exotic world.Half the crew were lost before the expedition made it back to the Netherlands the following year, but with enough spices to make a considerable profit.
In 1598, an increasing number of fleets were sent out by competing merchant groups from around the Netherlands.The name ‘Dutch East India Company’ is used to make a distinction with the [British] East India Company (EIC) and other East Indian companies (such as the Danish East India Company, French East India Company, Portuguese East India Company, and the Swedish East India Company).