Tourists will not to able to buy cannabis in coffee shops in the Netherlands starting from May 2012. Under the new law coffee shops will only be able to sell the drug to registered members and not to tourists. Only Dutch citizens and foreign residents will be allowed to register for membership.

Each coffee shop will only be permitted to register a maximum 2,000 members and all shops must be at least 350 metres from schools rather than the present 250 metres.

The three border regions of Noord-Brabant, Limburg and Zeeland will start enforcing the regulations in May 2012 and the rest of the country will follow in January 2013. The situation in the three southern regions, where people drive across the borders from Germany and Belgium to buy their supplies, has been more difficult to control than in Amsterdam and other areas.

However Amsterdam coffee shops will also be seriously affected by the new regulations when they come into force in January 2013 as it is estimated that one million tourists visit the city