Planning of the Netherlands Commercial Court
The Netherlands Commercial Court (NCC) will no longer be opening its doors on 1 January, 2017, as originally planned.
Addressing a question put to him by labour MP Jeroen Recourt and member of the Standing Committee for Security and Justice (vaste commissie voor Veiligheid en Justitie), Foort van Oosten MP stated that it was his “understanding that the NCC was to come into effect on 1 January 2017”, but that this deadline “would not be met”. He cited delays in the passing of the necessary legislation. These comments were made on 29 September 2016, during discussions between the Standing Committee for Security and Justice (vaste commissie voor Veiligheid en Justitie) and justice minister Ard van der Steur. A revised opening date was not stated, however according to the Dutch government’s legislative schedule, the Netherlands Commercial Court Act (Wet Netherlands Commercial Court) is slated to come into force on 1 January 2018.
Notwithstanding the delays in the launch of the NCC, support for the first fully English language commercial court in the Netherlands remains strong. The strong political support for the initiative is apparent from the discussions of the Standing Committee, with Christian Democrat Madeleine van Toorenburg MP underlining the importance of the NCC, in particular with the Brexit on its way. This was echoed by Mr Van Oosten, who cited the value of the NCC as a vehicle to promote the exemplary Dutch legal system and to attract litigation from other jurisdictions to the Netherlands. According to Mr Van Oosten, this is in keeping with the Netherlands’ history as a country with a tradition of international trade and an international legal profession.
The government is also committed to the project. Minister Van der Steur told the Standing Committee that he is strongly dedicated to the NCC initiative. According to the minister, the first draft of the bill has now been finalised and would soon be submitted to the Advisory Committee for Civil Procedure (Adviescommissie voor burgerlijk procesrecht) for comment before being tabled in parliament.