City of Amsterdam

Amsterdam – The hub for international trade

Amsterdam provides a high level of quality and cultural life as well as a great business ecosystem.

Visitors, inhabitants and companies can find a fantastic digital and social network in the city and everything is connected by land, water and air.

Modern Amsterdam’s spirit of commerce and excellent quality of life make it a magnet for talent, startups and international headquarters for companies from across the globe. All relevant contacts are close at hand, and a wide network of internationally orientated service providers offer companies a competitive edge.

The city

Amsterdam is the capital of the Netherlands and with around 884.000 inhabitants the most populated city in the country.

It is part of the the county Noord-Holland and situated at the river Amstel, the estuary IJ and through the North Sea Canal also connected to the sea.

Famous for its characteristic grachten-belt, several historic canals surrounding the old town, Amsterdam is known as “Venice of the North“,

refering to the public as well as commercial transport on water in the city, lots of bridges connecting the busy and charming quarters and the cities history and tradition in international trade by shares and shipping.

History

First documented as “Amstelledamme“ in 1275 from Floris V, Count of Holland and Zeeland, Amsterdams richness grew continuosly in the 14th and 15th century.  Important for this development was on one hand the so called “Miracle of Amsterdam“ (1345) which made the city an important stop for pilgrims and the in advance to this from Floris V given customs law for Hamburg beer (1323).

The “Golden Age“ for Amsterdam in the 17th century started with the foundation of the VOC (“Verenigde Oost-Indische Compagnie“), one of the biggest and most important trading companies of its time, which on one hand created a great international trade and stock exchange network, including shipping routes to  North America, Brasil, Indonesia and Africa. On the other hand, as other countries and organisations in this era, VOC also was responsible for slave trade and the systematic murder of natives in the trading posts oversea.

Competition and war ended the cities “Golden Age“ and it took time until, in the second half of the 19th century, Amsterdam became an industrial city, with new economic sectors like the diamond industry, shipbuilding, clothing and engine factories and later car and aircraft production.

It was also in that time that the North Sea Canal (1865-1876) and the famous train station Amsterdam Centraal was inaugurated (1889).

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Adrian Meindl,
Project Manager Exhibition

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