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Bill adopted by Dutch Parliament introducing a duty of care to prevent child labour

On 7 February 2017, the Dutch Parliament adopted a bill introducing a duty of care to prevent child labour (Wet zorgplicht kinderarbeid – the "Bill"). The Bill requires companies selling goods and services to Dutch end-users to determine whether child labour occurs in their supply chains. If so, companies must set out a plan of action on how to combat it and issue a due diligence statement (verklaring gepaste zorgvuldigheid) on their investigation and plan of action. In cases of non-compliance, companies risk a fine up to a maximum of EUR 820,000 or, alternatively, 10% of their annual turnover. The Bill is now before the Senate and – if approved – it will not come into effect before 1 January 2020...A supervising authority will be appointed to monitor compliance with the Bill. The statement will be recorded in a public register...Being fined twice within five years will constitute an economic offence, which may lead to criminal proceedings...Although the Bill has yet to be finalized and approved, it is important for companies to align their policies with this new legislation over the next few years.

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