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Left-wing parties argue over economy

24 November 2008 - Amsterdam must allow Schiphol Airport and the harbour to grow rather than increase its citizens' spending power, says city council member Michiel Mulder (PvdA). He attacks the SP for 'celebrating the victory over capitalism'.

According to Mulder, stimulating demand is impracticable at the local level. "In order to compensate for the evaporated stock exchange value, we would have to increase the Amsterdam budget fourfold". Instead, he advocates strengthening the Amsterdam business climate and its economic structure.

Mulder accuses the SP of having an ideological party at the expense of the people it claims to represent. By refusing to support measures to strengthen Amsterdam's economic structure it would be letting Amsterdammers down.

The SP was among the first parties in Amsterdam to respond to the financial crisis. "Unfortunately, even a Socialist cannot applaud this strike at capitalism, for many people will suffer", Laurens Ivens said almost two months ago.

"The important thing now is to stop focussing on the corporate grabbers, and instead invest in Amsterdammers and jointly help the the Amsterdam economy recover".

Last weekend, het Parool quoted an economic prognosis of Alderman Lodewijk Asscher. He expects the number of new foreign businesses locating in Amsterdam to decrease by at least 30% next year. The harbour and tourism will also suffer and the value of the city's shares in the airport and in the Nuon energy company will drop.


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