MRA economy grows by more than 4 percent after record contraction

The economy of the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area (MRA) experienced a historically unique contraction of 7.1 percent in 2020: nearly twice the national contraction of 3.8 percent. The MRA economy is expected to grow 4.1 percent in 2021.

Thus, growth rebounds slightly more vigorously than the Dutch economy (expected growth of 3.9 percent). This is stated in the Economic Outlook Amsterdam Metropolitan Area 2021, published today.

By the second half of 2022, the size of the MRA’s economy (expressed as gross domestic product) is expected to have returned to the level it was at just before the corona crisis broke out. Although the MRA’s economy rebounded quickly in 2021, the recovery remains fragile due to the uncertain development of the corona pandemic.

MRA economy ‘rebounding strongly’

Councillor Victor Everhardt (Economic Affairs, Chairperson Platform Economy MRA): “The Economic Outlook shows that the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area is rebounding strongly, but that the consequences of the corona crisis, in which we are still in the midst of, will be visible for some time to come. We must now invest together in the region and with the state in further socioeconomic recovery. In the coming years, the energy transition, better functioning of the labour market as well as the housing market, accessibility and equality of opportunity for all inhabitants in the region will be central.”

Tight labour market continues

The impact of the corona pandemic on employment has been limited by the massive use of government support. Unemployment rose to 4.2 percent in the MRA in 2020 (especially among young people, flex workers and the low-skilled), but returned to historically low pre-crisis levels during 2021.

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The structural tightness in the labour market that was already evident before the corona pandemic has thus returned faster than expected. In the coming years, that tightness will increase further due to an aging population. Only by promoting labour participation and labour productivity growth can the region’s ambitions in the areas of sustainability, digitalisation, shortages in the housing market and maintenance of public facilities in healthcare, education and security be realised.

The ‘Economische Verkenningen Metropoolregio Amsterdam 2021‘ contain the latest figures on economic developments in the 32 municipalities of the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area and the provinces of North Holland and Flevoland, which have a combined population of 2.5 million. The ‘Economic Outlook’ will be presented today at the online State of the Region event. During the event, governments, businesses, knowledge institutions and civil society organisations will consider the region’s shared challenges, strengths and assets. The central theme this year is ‘Investing in the Future’: in a sustainable route out of the corona crisis, in education and the labour market, in energy transition and in collaboration.

A metropolis with vigor

As in previous years, economic growth and employment is concentrated in Amsterdam and Amstelland-Meerlanden (Aalsmeer, Amstelveen, Diemen, Haarlemmermeer, Ouder-Amstel and Uithoorn), but also spreads, more than before, throughout the region. During State of the Region, new cooperation agreements within the Amsterdam Metropolitan Area will be presented. With the agreements made, the MRA wants to work together on solutions to societal challenges. The MRA, together with companies and knowledge institutions, also wants to make a strong voice heard towards the national government, Europe and partners about the necessary investments.

Want to know more? Download the digital version of the Economic Outlook MRA 2021 (in Dutch). And order the EVMRA 2021 (also in Dutch) in compact book form.


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