Amsterdam could ban foreign visitors from buying cannabis in its famous coffee shops in an effort to reduce tourism.
The city is struggling to cope with the huge numbers of people that flock there to take advantage of its tolerant drug policy – more than 17 million a year for a city with just 1.1 million permanent residents.
Mayor Femke Halsema wants to reduce those numbers in an effort to clean up Amsterdam’s seedy red light district. In a letter to councillors on how to reduce the attraction of drug use to foreigners, she pointed to recent survey results that indicate cannabis is a key motivator for many tourists.
100 people aged between 18 and 35 were surveyed, with 57% saying coffee shops were an important part of why they chose to visit Amsterdam.