Cannabis products containing more than 15 percent THC, the main active chemical, will be classified alongside hard drugs such as cocaine and ecstasy.
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.
Federal rules to go into effect no later than December 2011 will prohibit coffeeshops from operating within 250 meters from a high school.
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.
In the concept of its campaign for next year’s town council elections, GroenLinks makes a case for a marijuana growing operation overseen by the City of Amsterdam. A handful of growers must be permitted to supply the product — provided they use ecological farming methods.
The coffeeshops — establishments where cannabis and other soft drugs can be legally bought and used — are under fire for various reasons, ranging from the nuisance created by tens of thousands of drug tourists, to ties to criminal organizations.
The mayors of some municipalities are closing the coffeeshops, while those of others towns — Amsterdam included — speak out in support of the current approach.
The price of Dutch Cannabis has risen by 20 percent over the past year.