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The Netherlands
Region Europe
Population 16408557
GDP (millions USD) 768,704
National Policies
Eggs for assisted reproduction commercial prohibited
Eggs for research commercial prohibited
Inheritable genetic modification PROHIBITED
Preimplantation genetic diagnosis social uses prohibited
Reproductive cloning PROHIBITED
Research cloning PROHIBITED
Sex selection Social uses prohibited
Surrogacy commercial prohibited
International Agreements
1997 COE Biomedicine Convention signed
1998 COE Cloning Convention signed
2005 UN Cloning Vote no
2005 UNESCO Sports Doping Convention RATIFIED
2007 Treaty of Lisbon signed


Key laws and policies

  • Commercial surrogacy: Article 151(b) in the Dutch Criminal Code (See Act of 16 September 1993, Staatsblad 486.)

Prohibited practices

The Embryos Act prohibits:

  • Reproductive cloning
  • Inheritable genetic modification
  • Social sex selection
  • Charging a fee for gametes or embryos above direct costs incurred
  • Allowing an embryo to develop outside the human body for longer than 14 days
  • Implanting a chimeric embryo into a human or animal, or allowing one to develop longer than 14 days

Commercial Surrogacy

Commercial surrogacy is generally prohibited by the Dutch Criminal Code.

Permitted and regulated practices

Embryo Donation

  • Donation of embryos left over from fertility treatment for research is permitted under the 2002 Act. Such research "must be of medical importance. If there are alternative methods, they must be used."

Pre-Implantation Genetic Diagnosis

  • PGD is only allowed if there is a high risk of a serious genetic disease, but there seems to be a tendency to allow testing for a more extensive range of diseases than in the past.[1]

Assisted Reproduction

  • Assisted reproduction is permitted and practiced.
  • Children have a right to information about their donors.

Altruistic Surrogacy

  • Is permitted in strict circumstances

Regulatory activities

All research programs must be approved by the Central Committee on Research involving Human Subjects (CCMO)."


The creation of embryos for research was prohibited by the 2002 Act for a period of three to five years, after which a decision will be taken on whether to lift the ban so that creating embryos for research purposes may be allowed subject to extremely strict conditions.

External links

European Union, "A comparative study on the regime of surrogacy in EU Member States' European Parliament," manuscript completed in May 2013, available at, (accessed 22 February 2015).

[edit] References

  1. "Dutch MPs agree on embryo testing," Radio Netherlands/Expatica, (July 4, 2008).