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Increase of migrant population in Dutch cities

Published on 07/06/2004

7 June 2004

AMSTERDAM — The percentage of migrant residents in the four largest Dutch cities, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Utrecht and The Hague, increased sharply from 36 to 43 percent between 1995 and 2003, the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) said on Monday.

The CBS also said the percentage of native Dutch residents has thus fallen from 64 to 57 percent, news agency nu.nl reported. The population of non-western immigrants makes up 31 percent of the four largest cities and western immigrants account for 12 percent.

The Netherlands is in the midst of a crackdown on immigration and such figures may be used by the government to justify its moves to force immigrants to integrate into Dutch society. The Netherlands is also moving to reduce immigration and refuse low-income earning migrants from settling in the four largest cities.

The change in population spread in recent years is due to Dutch natives moving to other municipalities and an influx of migrants into the four largest Randstad cities from foreign countries. The natural growth of native residents in the cities by births has also declined.
From the mid-1960s, the populations of Amsterdam, Rotterdam and The Hague declined for a long period, but this trend was reversed at the end of the 1980s.

The total population of the four large cities grew by 66,000 between 1995 and 2003 due primarily to an expansion in municipal borders. The population increase in the original municipal borders only amounted to 19,000.

A total of 89,000 native Dutch residents moved out of the original municipal borders of Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague and Utrecht. The migrant population rose — primarily by migrants arriving from foreign countries — between 1995 and 2003 by 63,000, of which 54,000 were non-western migrants.

The departure of the native population was thus compensated by about 70 percent by primarily non-western immigrants moving into the cities.

The CBS also said the native population in the four large cities was further reduced between 1995 and 2003 as the number of deaths exceeded the number of births by about 40,000.

Natural population growth among non-western immigrants led to an increase of 85,000 residents. In the original municipal borders, the number of native Dutch fell by 129,000, while the number of migrants increased by 139,000.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Dutch news