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Opinion: High economic growth masks old as well as new problems

20 February 2018

The recent economic growth figures, which have met with applause, conceal that too little has been done to tackle the causes of the last crisis and the increasing problems on the labour market.

Harry Garretsen
Harry Garretsen
Steven Brakman
Steven Brakman

Last week Statistics Netherlands (CBS) announced that the Dutch economy grew by over 3% in 2017. This is the highest rate of growth since 2008, and in the last 20 years the economy grew faster only in 2006 and 2007. In Dutch political circles people have been in a jubilant mood for some time, and the private sector is also very confident about the future. But at every party there is always someone who puts a damper on the mood; in this case, the writers of this article who cast a long shadow over the prevailing euphoria. The Dutch economy is doing well, but the problems that surfaced when the crisis erupted in 2008 have not really been tackled and too little attention is paid to new challenges.

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