|Photo: THC Finder|
|The Dutch make lots of money on cannabis tourism — so obviously, they have to stop that. Wait a minute…|
The Dutch Cabinet said it will go ahead with plans to force anyone wishing to buy marijuana at the country’s “coffee shops” to first get an official pass — a move designed to stop tourists from buying cannabis.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte said he plans to begin rolling out the system in southern Netherlands later this year, reports the Associated Press. The southern part of the country is popular with French and German cannabis tourists. The system would then be instituted in Amsterdam’s famed weed cafes, which are major tourist attractions for the city, later in Rutte’s term of office.
The Dutch Supreme Court must still rule on whether foreigners can be blocked entirely, Justice Ministry spokesman Wim van der Weegen said on Friday.
Regardless, the plan will prevent cafes from issuing more than 1,500 permits in all, forcing shop owners to choose between tourists and their regular customers.
That is seen by some observers as a clever way to get around the European Union requirement of treating all EU residents equally — by not telling shops they have to ban foreigners, just tell them they can only sell cannabis to 1,500 total customers. Of course, most or all shops will pick the local regulars, rather than tourists who will only be in town a couple days.