18 February 2016

Dutch law on chemicals (precursors)

Netherlands Act on Abuse Chemicals

Chemicals or precursors in the Netherlands are covered by a special Act: Preventing Abuse of Chemicals Act. This act on chemicals deals with the trafficking in chemical substances that may be used in the production of drugs, came into force in 1995. This law addresses international regulations and provides for a comprehensive licensing system for the manufacture and the trafficking of registered chemicals. A breach of this law constitutes an economic offence and is subject to a maximum penalty of 6 years’ imprisonment, and fines of up to € 670 000 per illegal transaction or shipment can be incurred. Profits thus acquired may be confiscated. The Netherlands Act on Preventing Abuse of Chemicals Act has also expanded law enforcement as pertaining to controlled substances. Also read: license and registration of medicine, API and medicinal cannabis.

Law enforcement Netherlands on precursors

The Dutch (investigation service) of the Ministry of Finance FIOD-ECD is responsible for law enforcement in the Netherlands in the field of precursors and oversees the implementation of the Act. The Fiod unit is therefore designated as the competent national authority. The customs has the domestic supervision of trade in and the production of chemical substances and has a close collaboration with the chemical industry. The chemical industry is obliged to report suspicious transactions. Several relevant Dutch national services in the field of synthetic drugs and precursors, such as Police, Customs, FIOD-ECD, Criminal Investigation Service, etc, combine efforts and co-operate in a joint national unit, the Unit Synthetic Drugs (USD) of the National Crime Squad. The main objectives are to improve the national collation of relevant information and to support and initiate investigations related to synthetic drugs.

License for use of chemicals

All chemical use is the Netherlands is subject to an environmental license to obtained from the competent authority. A Dutch attorney can assist to obtain a license for the use of chemicals in allowed products. In case a license is refused by the authorities the Dutch lawyer can advice on the administrative procedure. Several relevant Dutch national services in the field law enforcement on synthetic drugs and precursors, such as Police, Customs, FIOD-ECD, Criminal Investigation Service, etc, combine efforts and co-operate in a joint national unit, the Unit Synthetic Drugs (USD) of the National Crime Squad. The main objectives are to improve the national collation of relevant information and to support and initiate investigations related to synthetic drugs. To improve the policy response to national and international issues regarding chemical precursors, the Dutch representatives of Ministries (Health, Economic Affairs, Justice, Foreign Affairs, Treasury) and executive public agencies such as the FIOD-ECD, the USD and Customs) meet regularly in the National Co-ordination Committee for Precursors (Nationale Coördinatiecommissie Precursoren).