Under a law passed by the previous Dutch government all so-called coffeeshops located within 250 metres walking distance from a school would have to close down by the end of this year.
The coalition agreement of the new Dutch cabinet says that coffeeshops should become private clubs accessible only to adult citizens of the Netherlands. Members would be registered for a pass card system, and tourists will be barred.
Among other measures the new government plans to transform coffeeshops into private clubs with membership available only to Dutch citizens.
The Amsterdam city council wants to experiment with coffeeshops — those establishments where soft drugs like marijuana and hash are legally sold and consumed.
In one variant drugs would only be consumed on the premises. The other consists only of a take-way counter open during established store hours.
In 2009 at the behest of then mayor Job Cohen three grow-shops were closed for violations of the Opium Act. That has inspired authorities to take a closer look.
The Dutch are among the lowest users of marijuana or cannabis in Europe despite the Netherlands’ well-known tolerance of the drug, Reuters writes, citing an annual report by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction.
The price of Dutch Cannabis has risen by 20 percent over the past year.