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Executive summary

The global crisis led the Netherlands into deep recession, despite a decisive government intervention to support the financial sector and a timely fiscal stimulus. The increase in unemployment was surprisingly limited, reflecting, among other factors, a severe pre-crisis overheating of the labour market. Growth recommenced in mid-2009. Looking ahead, the recovery is expected to gather pace relatively slowly. In this context, the main challenges for the government coming in after the June 2010 general election are to exit from stimulus policies and to boost potential growth in an ageing society

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