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International Commercial Trade Regulations

​On 1 July 2017 the International Commercial Trade Regulations enter into force. These Regulations replace the Knowledge-based Industry Pilot Project, which expires as of 1 July.

The International Commercial Trade Regulations offer the international business community the opportunity to bring flex workers to the Netherlands from outside the country for employment activities that are not in competition with the Dutch or EU workforce. This covers, for example, training employees in how to use new machinery or offering training courses to employees of a Dutch company's foreign client in the Netherlands.

The Regulations have been incorporated into Article 1(k) of the Foreign Nationals (Employment) Act Implementation Decree (Besluit uitvoering Wet arbeid vreemdelingen, BuWav) and published in the Bulletin of Acts and Decrees of the Netherlands (Staatsblad 2017, 134).

Applications to the International Commercial Trade Regulations
Companies that wish to be considered eligible under the International Commercial Trade Regulations must first submit a Request for Admission of a Procedure with Accompanying Employment Activities to the Employment Insurance Schemes Implementing Body (Uitvoering Werknemersverzekeringen, UWV). The UWV checks to see whether the procedure fulfils the criteria set down in Article 1(k) of the Implementation Decree (BuWav). If the procedure is approved, the employer no longer has to apply for a work permit for non-EU nationals (TWV) in order to allow foreign nationals to be employed within the framework of the procedure. It is sufficient for the employer to notify the UWV regarding the employees. There is a special application and notification form developed specifically for this purpose, which you can download at www.werk.nl/werkvergunning (only available in Dutch).

Applications for Residence Permits under the Regulations
Employees who come to the Netherlands to work for longer than 3 months must apply for a residence permit. The Immigration & Naturalisation Service (IND) can issue a regular residence permit for a specific period of time with the restriction 'employed work' based on the International Commercial Trade Regulations if it can be demonstrated that the employer's procedure has been accepted under the Regulations and the employer has notified the UWV regarding the employee. The residence permit may be issued for, or extended up to, a maximum of 1 year.

Further Information
For further information about the contents of the Regulations and how to submit a request for admission to the Regulations, please visit www.werk.nl/werkvergunning. You can also contact the UWV by phone at 088 898 2070.

For all other information regarding residence permits, please visit www.ind.nl/en. You can also contact the IND by phone at 088 0430 430 (your normal rates apply to these calls). From outside the Netherlands, please call +31 88 0430 430.  

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