A major port, Amsterdam is also the seat of one of the world's chief stock exchanges, a center of the diamond-cutting industry, and one of the great commercial, intellectual, and artistic capitals of Europe. Its manufactures include clothing, printed materials, and metal goods. Amsterdam is connected with the North Sea by the North Sea Canal (opened in 1876), which can accommodate large oceangoing vessels, and by the older North Holland Canal (opened 1824). The Amsterdam-Rhine Canal connects the city with the Rhine delta and thus with industrial NW Germany, with which there is considerable transit trade. Amsterdam is a major road and rail hub and is served by nearby Schiphol airport. Tourism is an important industry.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.