Amsterdam shows strongest economic growth; Rotterdam has highest unemployment rate

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All Dutch provinces except Groningen saw economic growth last year, according to figures Statistics Netherlands released on Tuesday. Of the four large Dutch cities, Amsterdam saw the biggest growth at 3 percent, The Hague the lowest at 2.2 percent. Rotterdam had the highest unemployment rate in the Netherlands last year at 11.3 percent, far above the national unemployment rate of around 6 percent.

Groningen's economy shrunk by 1.7 percent last year, thanks to a reduction in gas production in the province. If gas production is excluded from the calculation, Groningen's economy grew by 2.2. percent. Friesland and Drenthe's economies were also pressured by lower gas production last year. Including gas the two other northern provinces saw 1.7 percent and 1.5 percent economic growth respectively. Excluding gas production, Friesland's economy grew by 2.2 percent and Drenthe by 2.3 percent.

The Dutch economy grew by 2.2 percent in 2016. Excluding gas production, the growth was 2.5 percent

All other Dutch provinces saw economic growth. Noord-Holland saw the strongest growth at 2.9 percent, despite poor performance in the financial sector. The province can attribute its strong economic position to strong growth in consulting, research and other specialty services, according to the statistics office. In addition, the rent and selling prices of residential and commercial buildings increased above average in the province, in large part thanks to Amsterdam. Overijssel and Noord-Brabant also saw strong economic growth, 2.6 percent and 2.5 percent, thanks to the industrial sectors in the provinces.

The Zaanstreek is the region that saw the strongest economic growth at 3.3 percent, according to Statistics Netherlands. This can be attributed to the food industry. The Delfzijl, Haarlemmermeer and Utrecht regions all saw 2.9 percent economic growth. Delfzijl benefited from the industry, Haarlemmermeer's economy was boosted by Schiphol airport and Utrecht earned good money from construction. 

Unemployment has been decreasing in all provinces since 2014. The decline was strongest in Limburg in 2016. Gorinchem and Zeeland were the regions with the lowest unemployment rates. The municipality with the least unemployment was Veere in Zeeland. Zeeland was also the province with the lowest unemployment rate last year at 4.4 percent. 

Groningen was the province with the highest unemployment rate at 7.4 percent, followed by Flevoland at 7.2 percent and Zuid-Holland at 6.9 percent. Rotterdam was the municipality with the highest unemployment rate, 11.3 percent. And the Rijnmond region, which includes Rotterdam, had the highest unemployment rate in the 35 regions with 8.2 percent. In ten regions the unemployment rate was higher than the national average, in 25 regions it was lower.



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