The Netherlands, an outsider's view.

The Netherlands, an outsider's view.

TOURISM

Major Dutch cities “strongly criticize” new ‘Airbnb law’



Officials in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, and Utrecht are dissatisfied with the ‘Airbnb law’ which minister Stientje van Veldhoven (Wonen, D66) sent to the House of Representatives on Monday. According to NRC, the four major cities “strongly criticize” the proposal because it “does not go far enough.”

The law mandates homeowners to apply to the municipality for a registration number before renting out their homes to tourists – with those who fail to register to face a fine of up to €83,000. NRC reports the municipalities are “disappointed that the enforcement of the rules will be entirely up to them.”

The cities prefer that platforms such as Airbnb, Booking, and Expedia also be obliged to register with the municipality. Amsterdam alderman Laurens Ivens (Wonen, SP) says to NRC, “If platforms do not receive obligations, it is half a measure.”

Minister Van Veldhoven says in a written response to NRC, “this bill is the maximum attainable within the European directives…To allow for more far-reaching measures towards the platforms, long-term commitment in Brussels is required.”

Last year more than 20,000 homes were booked in Amsterdam through Airbnb. NRC cites “illegal hotels” and local residents who “suffer from partying tourists,” adding that “Research also shows that house prices rise faster due to holiday rentals.” Amsterdam is particularly affected by heavy tourism but growth in the other major Dutch cities causes authorities to fear “Amsterdam situations.”






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