Construction—Netherlands—Q&A guide

The following Construction practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Construction—Netherlands—Q&A guide
  • 1. If a foreign designer or contractor wanted to set up an operation to pursue the local market, what are the key concerns they should consider before taking such a step?
  • 2. Must foreign designers and contractors be licensed locally to work and, if so, what are the consequences of working without a licence?
  • 3. Do local laws provide any advantage to domestic contractors in competition with foreign contractors?
  • 4. What legal protections exist to ensure fair and open competition to secure contracts with public entities, and to prevent bid rigging or other anticompetitive behaviour?
  • 5. If a contractor has illegally obtained the award of a contract, for example by bribery, will the contract be enforceable? Are bribe-givers and bribe-takers prosecuted and, if so, what are the penalties they face? Are facilitation payments allowable under local law?
  • 6. Under local law, must employees of the project team members report suspicion or knowledge of bribery of government employees and, if so, what are the penalties for failure to report?
  • 7. Is the making of political contributions part of doing business? If so, are there laws that restrict the ability of contractors or design professionals to work for public agencies because of their financial support for political candidates or parties?
  • 8. Is a construction manager or other construction professional acting as a public entity’s representative or agent on a project (and its employees) subject to the same anti-corruption and compliance rules as government employees?
  • 9. Are there any other important legal issues that may present obstacles to a foreign contractor attempting to do business in your jurisdiction?
  • More...

Construction—Netherlands—Q&A guide

This Practice Note contains a jurisdiction-specific Q&A guide to construction in Netherlands published as part of the Lexology Getting the Deal Through series by Law Business Research (published: May 2021).

Authors: Loyens & Loeff—Jurriaan van der Stok; Ynze van der Tempel; Timo Huisman

1. If a foreign designer or contractor wanted to set up an operation to pursue the local market, what are the key concerns they should consider before taking such a step?

The starting point for any foreign designer or contractor contemplating setting up an operation in the Netherlands to pursue the Dutch market would be to familiarise itself with Dutch laws, regulations and customs and to analyse the local prospects and the fiscal implications. This knowledge could be obtained by engaging local expertise – often, the principals for construction projects require proof of engagement in relation to knowledge of Dutch laws and regulations.

There is no specific supervision for foreign designers or contractors in the Netherlands. When engaging in design and construction activities, all relevant Dutch laws and regulations must be complied with.

For a local office, the general options are leasing and acquisition. Leasing or the acquisition of an existing office (brownfield investment) would be the most time-efficient approach. Leasing would likely provide the desired flexibility, as in the case of an exit, the property can be redelivered to the landlord in accordance with

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