The Netherlands Essay, Research Paper
The Netherlands is low-lying state in western Europe located west of Germany and North of Belgium. Harmonizing to a 1993 estimation, the Netherlands had a population of 15,224,942. The overall population denseness was about 449 individuals per sq kilometer ( about 1162 per sq myocardial infarction ) which makes it one of the most dumbly populated states in the universe. About 89 per centum of the population live in urban countries. The largest metropoliss are Amsterdam ( population, 1992 estimation, 713,407 ) , the state & # 8217 ; s capital ; Rotterdam ( 589,707 ) , one of the universe & # 8217 ; s taking havens ; The Hague ( 445,287 ) , the state & # 8217 ; s place of authorities ; and Utrecht ( 232,705 ) , a fabrication hub. The official linguistic communication of the Netherlands is Dutch, which is spoken throughout the state.
The Netherlands is a constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of authorities runing under an 1812 fundamental law with amendments. The familial sovereign, who has had small power in running the authorities since the fundamental law was revised in 1848, acts as the caput of the province while the chief executive functionary of the state is the premier curate. He is appointed by the sovereign and heads a cabinet that is responsible to the States-General ( legislative assembly ) . The Dutch parliament, called the States-General, consists of a First Chamber, composed of 75 members elected to footings of up to six old ages by the provincial legislative assemblies, and a Second Chamber, made up of 150 members popularly elected to footings of up to four old ages under a system of relative representation. Either or both Chamberss may be dissolved by the sovereign on status that new elections be held within 40 yearss. The Second Chamber is by far the more of import of the two ; the First Chamber has little more than a seldom exercised veto power over the legislative procedure.
The Netherlands uses systems of relative representation in electing municipal, provincial, and national assemblies. This allows even little political parties to win a place. In the 1986 Second Chamber elections, for illustration, more than 25 parties took portion and nine won seats. On the national degree, the Netherlands has ever been governed by alliances of parties, the formation of which has frequently proved hard. However, one such alliance was formed in 1994 between the PvdA ( Labor ) , VVD ( Conservative Liberals ) , and D66 ( Social Liberals ) . The PvdA and VVD are parties that have both been around for rather some clip. What made the 1994 election so large was the licking of the CDA ( Christian Democrats ) by D66. This combination of parties proved to be rather advantageous to the Netherlands. & # 8220 ; It was the first authorities since 1917, when the right to vote was extended to all male grownups, without Christian Democrats & # 8221 ; ( Van der Brug 179 ) .
During the reign of this alliance, the economic system of the Netherlands soared. Consumer disbursement increased and unemployment decreased to a depression of 5 per centum in the first one-fourth of 1998 & # 8220 ; There is no such uncertainty about the public presentation of the Dutch economic system. Gross domestic merchandise ( GDP ) has expanded strongly in the last two old ages & # 8211 ; by 2.7 per centum in 1996 and 3.4 per cent in 1997- and analysts expect GDP Growth to be even higher in 1998 & # 8243 ; ( Mottershaw 9 ) . With all of the economic growing that go oning in the Netherlands, one would presume that the elections of 1998 would maintain the same alliance together. & # 8220 ; However, in a multiparty system such as the Netherlands, things are ne’er that simple. Regulating parties may be join forcesing spouses in alliance, but, in the runup to the election they progressively become oppositions viing for ballots & # 8221 ; ( Van der Brug 180 ) . This competition for ballots is precisely what took topographic point in the 1998 elections. The popularity of the premier curate Wim Kok and his party, PvdA, won the party more seats which were taken from the D66. D66 besides gave up some seats to other little parties such as the Socialist Party and the Green Left.
The consequences of this recent election have caused a major splash in the state and around the universe. & # 8220 ; Since the? purple & # 8217 ; alliance was created in 1994 D66 has played a polar function, bridging the spread between the two chief parties. However, with their seats reduced by about half & # 8211 ; from 24 to 14 & # 8211 ; the party & # 8217 ; s engagement in the opinion alliance is no longer vouch & # 8221 ; ( Mottershaw 9 ) . After holding a successful four old ages in the alliance, D66 & # 8217 ; s loss of about half of their seats was a major blow. The party is so disquieted over the affair that they may make up one’s mind non to fall in in the alliance once more and alternatively sit on the resistance benches. If D66 does non take portion in the alliance, so constructing a new one may be rather hard because the cardinal issue which divides the two chief parties is economic sciences.
The PvdA, the large victor in the 1998 election, interprets the election consequences as mark that the people want the rigorous financial policy of the last four old ages relaxed. The VVD, on the other manus, wants to see a continuance of budget cuts, shortage decrease, and revenue enhancement alleviation. Even if the politicians do nil but argue, usually the Netherlands would be all right, and they could merely sit on their flourishing economic system. However, the coming launch of the new European currency could throw the whole thing off because the Dutch are set to play a major function in it. How can the Dutch launch a new currency to govern Europe when they can & # 8217 ; t even make up one’s mind what to make with their ain money? & # 8220 ; How the two parties will decide their differences and organize a feasible confederation remains to be seen & # 8221 ; ( Mottershaw 10 ) .
Others seem to demo less concern over the Netherlands & # 8217 ; political affairs. An article in The Economist says that the Dutch themselves are losing small slumber over the affair. & # 8220 ; Indeed, the composure is permeant that no 1 seems certain what is coming following. Possibly nil: although Wim Kok, the popular center-left premier curate, resigned on May 19th, it remains ill-defined whether he or his authorities will really be gone for good & # 8221 ; ( So what? 50 ) . Although Kok has resigned, he has shown marks of desiring to lodge around. His stay will all depend on whether or non the old alliance can set itself back together once more. If it does non, so Kok will likely stay in office to take attention of affairs until the following general election. & # 8220 ; Either manner, it is a safe stake that small will alter in the manner the comfortable Dutch are ruled & # 8221 ; ( So what? 50 ) .
In add-on to the political splash caused by the 1998 election, there are besides a twosome pieces of statute law that are do some problem of their ain. The first is the euthanasia jurisprudence in the Netherlands. As it is everyplace else, assisted self-destruction is illegal in the Netherlands. However, on August 10th, the Dutch curates of justness and wellness proposed a measure that would let for kids every bit immature as 12 to be assisted in perpetrating self-destruction, even if their parents disagree ( Spanjer 660 ) . The measure will besides put up a set of rigorous standards that, if followed, will protect physicians from prosecution. & # 8220 ; This will stop a 15 twelvemonth anomaly whereby physicians executing mercy killing committed a serious offense but avoided prosecution if similar, though non-statutory standards, were met & # 8221 ; ( Sheldon 467 ) .
The inquiry that everyone is inquiring is, & # 8220 ; Why would the authorities want to do aided suicide legal? & # 8221 ; . & # 8220 ; Research shows that merely 41 per cent of an estimated 3600 mercy killing instances each twelvemonth are reported by physicians to the governments. By taking mercy killing from a condemnable context, the authorities hopes to increase this figure & # 8221 ; ( Sheldon 467 ) . The Royal Dutch Medical Association seems to back up the thought, but they are about the lone 1s.
& # 8220 ; Dr Karel Gunning of the World Federation of Doctors Who Respect Human Life fears that the proposals give physicians excessively much freedom as the reappraisal commissions base their judgements entirely on a study which the physicians themselves have written & # 8221 ; ( Sheldon 467 ) .
Along with physicians all over the universe, many of the parties in parliament Don & # 8217 ; t seem to happy about the proposal either. The Christian Democrats and other rightist parties disagree vehemently with the proposals and promise & # 8220 ; aggressive & # 8221 ; unfavorable judgment when the proposals are debated later this twelvemonth ( Spanjer 660 ; Sheldon 467 ) .
The other major issue in Dutch political relations is the drug policy. Since the late 1970 & # 8217 ; s, it has been legal to smoke marihuanas and utilize other soft drugs. While this may look like an absurd thought to other states, the Dutch drug policy seems to be working rather good. For illustration, the usage of hemp in the Netherlands is lower than in the United States ( Barnard 68 ) . The problem starts when other states, viz. France, seek to enforce their thoughts on drug enforcement on the Netherlands. While seeking to command the flow of drugs within their ain states, European states are faulting the Netherlands & # 8217 ; loose policy on drugs for all of the jobs. However, the policy on hemp has non led to an addition in the figure of hard-drug users, and hence, the steppingstone hypothesis can non be confirmed ( Barnard 69 ) . In fact, merely about 1.6 per centum of the Dutch population are said to be addicted to hard drugs. & # 8220 ; This compares with an estimated 160,000 nuts in France, or 2.8 per centum of the population ; 200,000 in Germany, or 1.5 per centum ; and 175,000 in Italy, or 3 per centum & # 8221 ; ( Gross 41 ) . Furthermore, Bob Keijzer, a senior drug-policy advisor in the wellness ministry, notes that about 50 people a twelvemonth dice of drug-related causes in the Netherlands, which is the lowest rate in the Western universe ( Gross 41 ) .
Never the less, the Netherlands has agreed to command more closely the flow of soft drugs inside their ain boundary lines to do France and all the remainder of European states happy. The Dutch have reduced the figure of java stores from 1,400 to 1,200, raised the age at which young persons can purchase soft drugs in java stores from 16 to 18, and limited purchases of soft drugs to one-sixth of an ounce at a clip, down from 1 ounce. Besides, java stores may stock merely 1.1 lbs of marihuana and hash, down from 2.2 lbs ( Gross 41 ) . While these alterations satisfy the criticizing states, they are non truly a large trade in the Netherlands, and the Dutch do non be after to do any serious alterations. Herbert Barnard, a counsellor for Heath and public assistance at the Royal Netherlands Embassy, says,
& # 8220 ; Our policy has produced consequences that are provably better than those in many of the states knocking us. While we realize that an on-going duologue with all those involved with the drug job is a stipulation for any advancement, we are non traveling to alter our policy on the footing of undue unfavorable judgment & # 8221 ; ( 69 ) .
As I have already mentioned, the Netherlands has a strong economic system with an accent on exports. The Netherlands has played a particular function in the European economic system for many centuries. Since the sixteenth century, transportation, fishing, trade, and banking have been taking sectors of the Dutch econom
Y, and trade with the country’s colonial imperium was of import in the 19th and the first half of the twentieth centuries. Since the independency of Indonesia in the late 1940’s, the Dutch economic system has been redirected from colonial trade to that with European states ; a diversified fabrication base was created as employment in agribusiness fell ; and the state became a major energy exporter as big sedimentations of natural gas were discovered. In all these alterations the national authorities played a major function, peculiarly by its economic planning. The government’s influence is great even though most houses are in private owned, because it distributes about half the Dutch national income. Besides of import in the economic growing of the Netherlands are the activities of a figure of big private houses.
In 1992 the gross domestic merchandise ( GDP ) of the Netherlands was measured at $ 324.6 billion. Between 1980 and 1990, the state & # 8217 ; s GDP grew at an mean annual rate of 1.9 per centum. About 32.5 per centum of the GDP is produced by fabrication, building, and energy-related activities ; agribusiness contributed 5 per centum, and the service sector was besides a major subscriber. As of late, nevertheless, the major growing of the Dutch economic system has been due to stock growing and, as I already mentioned, big activity among private houses.
& # 8220 ; Previously, puting in stocks and bonds in the Netherlands, like in other European states, had been a affair chiefly for those in the fiscal industry and the affluent & # 8221 ; ( Janssen 42 ) . In fact, non until the late 1980 & # 8217 ; s did it happen to middle category Dutchmen or adult females to put their nest eggs in the stock market. Now all of that has changed. Presently in the Netherlands, everybody negotiations about having stocks. The stock market-fad is brushing through the state. Investor nines have become highly popular, and there are a figure of puting classs, seminars and fairs welcome to the populace. & # 8220 ; About 2 million people in the Netherlands are stockholders in one manner or another & # 8221 ; ( Jansen 42 ) .
Throughout history, the Netherlands has ever been about having stock. For illustration, the VOC, the Dutch East Indies Company, founded in 1602, was the first stock-owned company in the universe. Today the Amsterdam Stock Exchange ( AEX ) , one of the oldest exchanges in Europe, ranks 4th in Europe, after London, Frankfurt, and Paris. Some of the large supporters of the AEX are pension financess. & # 8220 ; Pension financess play an of import function in the Dutch economic system, as all workers are obliged to salvage for their old age through their employer & # 8217 ; s pension fund & # 8221 ; ( Jansen 42 ) . Some of these financess are immense participants in the universe market. For illustration, the fund for Dutch populace retainers is one of the largest financess in the universe. In add-on, the authorities actively promotes single nest eggs for retirement. Consequently, with everyone believing about their ulterior old ages, the AEX will ever hold a good market.
Another major factor in the Dutch economic system are the legion sums of big, independent companies. One such company is a gas and oil company known as Royal Dutch/Shell. Shell gas Stationss are located all over the universe, chiefly in North America and in Europe. Despite hideous gas monetary values in the Netherlands, like $ 4.15 per gallon, Shell has 12,954 gasolene Stationss in Europe entirely ( Jansen 44 ; Firms Agree NA ) . The high gas monetary values in the Netherlands are due to a authorities revenue enhancement on gas. Almost 80 per centum of the monetary value of gas goes to revenue enhancements. The authorities has placed such a high revenue enhancement on fuel in an effort to cut down traffic and environmental pollution. Shell is non traveling to allow the high gas monetary value affect their growing, nevertheless. In a recent trade between Shell and PetroFina, the companies have agreed to trade Shell gasolene Stationss in the Netherlands for Fina Inc. Stationss and other selling activities in Norway ( Firms Agree NA ) . If the trade goes through without any hinderance from the EU Commission antimonopoly governments, so Shell portion would be the highest in the Netherlands, where they would command 42.3 per centum of the pumps. Their closest rival is Texaco which merely has 2,984 gas Stationss which are largely in Britain.
In add-on to the big companies, amusement is get downing to play critical function in the economic system. As of late, there has been a large splash among telecasting companies over the awaited reaching of the new Fox channel. Fox telecasting hit America and practically took over. They show a broad assortment of household shows, shows that are geared more towards adult females, and, to fulfill the work forces, legion featuring events. & # 8220 ; Commercial channels in Holland, already strapped with meagre net incomes and splintered audiences, are poising for a new unit of ammunition of competition with the relaunch of niche channel TV10 as a new Fox Group mercantile establishment. . . & # 8221 ; ( Edmunds 52 ) . Previously, TV10 had been demoing Fox Kids shows during the twenty-four hours and acquiring rave reappraisals. However, their dark clip line-up has non been making so good. Showing shows like & # 8220 ; The A-Team & # 8221 ; and & # 8220 ; Kung Fu & # 8221 ; has been pulling audiences in the 50-and-over scope, which advertizers hate. The new Fox line-up, nevertheless, plans to alter all of that. Hans Bloem, pull offing manager of TV10, says that the new line-up will dwell of & # 8220 ; new and interesting & # 8221 ; shows from Fox, every bit good as some Dutch plans ( Edmunds 52 ) . & # 8220 ; Bloem has said the scheduling will be alleged? household amusement & # 8217 ; aimed at capturing? the parents of the kids who watch Fox Kids & # 8217 ; & # 8221 ; ( Edmunds 52 ) .
There are some sceptics out at that place, nevertheless. Some industry perceivers question whether or non there is room in the market for another channel. & # 8220 ; . . . Netherlands I and RTL 4 already plan a just sum of household amusement, and their audience portions have been dunking instead than turning in recent old ages & # 8221 ; ( Edmunds 52 ) . However, TV10 is skiping that the add-on of Fox Entertainment will wholly steel all of the viewing audiences in Holland and shut down the competition for good.
Another asset in the amusement industry is the record Numberss in the film industry. & # 8220 ; It took several old ages of intense plex-building activity, a sophisticated selling run, a roseola of nice pies, and two Academy awards in the class of three old ages, but the Dutch eventually are acquiring out of their places and back in forepart of the large screen & # 8221 ; ( Edmunds 74 ) . Because of the new push towards the film, attending last twelvemonth rose to 18.9 million, the highest point in 20 old ages. Experts believe that, if the attending figures follow the same form set in 1997, attending could mount every bit high as 21 million by the twelvemonth & # 8217 ; s terminal. This roar in film traveling could perchance bring forth stopping point to $ 120 million in gross revenues.
With the economic system traveling so good, it is no uncertainty that the Dutch have superb international dealingss. Although the Netherlands is a little state, its technology and consultancy services are some of the strongest in the universe. & # 8220 ; It ranks 3rd after the US and the UK in footings of fees earned by advisers, and the sector is still turning & # 8221 ; ( Faith wins 9 ) . Holland & # 8217 ; s chief countries of traditional expertness are hydraulic technology, agribusiness and conveyance. These accomplishments, developed over centuries of land renewal at place and trading around the universe, have earned the Dutch a long standing regard and a demand for their expertness in countries such as the Middle East.
Another cardinal facet to the Netherlands & # 8217 ; international success is the state & # 8217 ; s place, which ensures that its economic system is built on trade with other states. & # 8220 ; The state ranks among the universe & # 8217 ; s top 10 exporters and is the 5th largest exporter in the EU & # 8221 ; ( Location is cardinal 12 ) . The states around the Netherlands history for the huge bulk of Dutch exports, viz. her adjacent state, Germany. The Middle East, nevertheless, histories for a good part of the state & # 8217 ; s staying exports. & # 8220 ; In 1996 Dutch exports to Asia totaled merely over $ 10,000 million. Of these, 21.3 per centum ended up in the Middle East & # 8221 ; ( Location is cardinal 12 ) . A major involvement to the Dutch economic system is Iraq. It is a big state with a big population and a batch of oil. & # 8220 ; Dutch companies are interested in Iraq, but merely when the prohibitions [ UN countenances ] are lifted & # 8221 ; ( Location is cardinal 12 ) .
Because of this acute involvement in Iraq and the state & # 8217 ; s huge regard among international personal businesss, the Netherlands has teemed up with the UK and presented a proposal to the UN Security Council to replace the UN Special Commission ( UNSCOM ) with a new arms reviews organic structure ( IRAQ 17 ) . The new organic structure, called the UN Commission for Investigation, Inspection & A ; Monitoring, would compel Iraq to let review squads immediate, unconditioned and unrestricted entree to all countries, installations, equipment, records and agencies of transit ( IRAQ 17 ) . In exchange for this, the new program would extinguish the $ 5,250 million bound on the sum of oil Iraq can sell under the UN oil-for-food trade and it would put up an UN commission to urge ways of increasing Iraq & # 8217 ; s oil production. Whether this program works or non will stay to be seen. The Netherlands would wish to see it travel through, nevertheless, so that trade with Iraq can get down every bit shortly as possible.
If you wanted to travel to another state, so the Netherlands would be the topographic point to travel. The authorities, although in a spot of a crunch right now, is really stable and the economic system is better that good. The broad ambiance in the Netherlands would make a cosy topographic point to name place and success would non be difficult to happen.
Barnard, Herbert. & # 8220 ; The Netherlands: Let & # 8217 ; s be Realistic. & # 8221 ; World and I 13.10 ( 1998 ) : 66-69.
Brug, Wouter new wave der. & # 8220 ; Floating Voters or Rolling Parties? The Dutch National Elections of 1998. & # 8221 ; West European Politicss 22.1 ( 1999 ) : 179-186.
Edmunds, Marlene. & # 8220 ; Fox Hounds TV Scene. & # 8221 ; Variety 372.8 ( 1998 ) : 52-53.
Edmunds, Marlene. & # 8220 ; Moviegoing Hits New High. & # 8221 ; Variety 371.6 ( 1998 ) : 74-75.
& # 8220 ; Faith Wins Long-Term Rewards. & # 8221 ; Middle East Economic Digest 39.21 ( 1995 ) : 9-14.
& # 8220 ; Firms Agree to Asset Swap. & # 8221 ; The Oil Daily 48.158 ( 1998 ) : Sodium
Gross, Richard C.. & # 8220 ; Dutch Claim Drug Policy works, but Agree to Stricter Enforcement. & # 8221 ; Insight on the News 13.10 ( 1997 ) : 40-41.
& # 8220 ; IRAQ. & # 8221 ; Middle East Economic Digest 43.17 ( 1999 ) : 17.
Janssen, Roel. & # 8220 ; High Taxes Haven & # 8217 ; t Slowed Traffic. & # 8221 ; Europe 385 ( 1999 ) : 44-45.
Janssen, Roel. & # 8220 ; Dutch Pensions Fuel Stock Growth. & # 8221 ; Europe 11 ( 1998 ) : 42-44.
& # 8220 ; Location is Key to Exceed 10 Performance. & # 8221 ; Middle East Economic Digest 42.21 ( 1998 ) : 12-13.
Mottershaw, Elizabeth. & # 8220 ; Coalition Comfort. & # 8221 ; Middle East Economic Digest 42.21 ( 1998 ) 9-11.
Sheldon, Tony. & # 8220 ; Netherlands Publishes Plans for Euthanasia Law. & # 8221 ; British Medical Journal 319.7208 ( 1999 ) : 467.
Spanjer, Marjanke. & # 8220 ; Dutch Bill to Change Euthanasia Laws. & # 8221 ; The Lancet 354.9179 ( 1999 ) : 660.
& # 8220 ; So What? & # 8221 ; The Economist 351.8121 ( 1999 ) : 50.