The Netherlands will no longer permit its citizens to adopt children from foreign countries, a Dutch government minister said, Report informs via Reuters.

Minister for Legal Protection Franc Weerwind added that intercountry procedures that already started will continue for the time being.

Dutch parents adopted around 40,000 children from 80 countries in the previous half-century. The practice has declined in recent years, with just 145 children adopted in 2019, dropping to 70 in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to most recent numbers of the independent Dutch Youth Institute think tank.

Between February 2021 and November 2022, the Dutch government had already implemented a freeze of almost two years on intercountry adoptions.