The Senate of Netherland passes Netherland Arbitration Act on 27th of May in 2014 to revise the 1986 Netherland Arbitration Act. The Netherland Arbitration Act shall be effective from the 1st of January in 2015.
1986 Netherland Arbitration Act had led the world-wide reform of legislation of arbitration in 1980s of 20th century, which won great reputation at that time. With the entering of the 21st century, arbitration develops very fast. Netherland’s arbitration legislation led the new reform again. Compared with the old Act, the new Act has following main changes: clearly regulates that the courts can rule to send the arbitral awards to arbitral tribunals for reconsideration; conversing the management of setting aside arbitral awards; submission of setting aside of arbitral awards by parties are not to district courts but appeal courts; allowing parties to appoint third party (eg. arbitration institution) to decide on the application of withdrawal of arbitrator (only courts can decide on this before); allowing parties to make agreement to exclude the possibility of appeal to the Supreme Court; changing the court of accepting the application of enforcement of foreign arbitral awards from Amsterdam District Court into Appeal Court and clearly regulates that parties may apply Netherland court for taking preservation measures to assist arbitration proceedings outside of the Netherland, including judges’ right to host cross-examination of witness; parties may agree third party (eg. arbitration institution) to decide to merge arbitration procedures of multiple cases; fording nation parties invoking its domestic legislatures to defend the applicability of arbitration (if the other party doesn’t know the domestic legislature).
Generally speaking, Netherland’s new Arbitration Act embodies the inclination of supporting arbitration. Especially, the new Act reacts to the newest development of interim preservation measures and merger of arbitrations, endowing more authorities to arbitration institutions, strengthening preservation and execution by courts to assist offshore arbitration. Meanwhile, limiting nations to abuse power in arbitrations involving nation party.