New measures have been announced by the Dutch Minister of Finance in order to improve the quality of financial advice rendered by persons that qualify as advisor under Dutch regulations.
On 31 January 2012, the Minister of Finance has announcedMinister of Finance has announced to take measures in order to improve the quality of financial advice rendered by advisors within the meaning of the Dutch Act on Financial Supervision (Wet op het financieel toezicht, “AFS”). These amendments constitute, together with the measures relating to turnover related fees and provisions, a comprehensive package of measures aimed at improving the quality of financial advice. These measures include:
obligation for every person providing services that qualify as “advice” within the meaning of the AFS to obtain a diploma to ensure that the relevant advisor possesses the required expertise;
enhancement of the permanent education requirements of financial advisors. Advisors will be obliged to stay up to date with the latest developments that are relevant in their field of expertise; and
establishment of a central exam questions database under the supervision of the College for Expertise Financial Services (College Deskundigheid Financiële Dienstverlening) in order to ensure the quality of the exams.
The abovementioned measures shall be incorporated in the Decree Market Conduct financial undertakings AFS (Besluit Gedragstoezicht financiële ondernemingen Wft) and will enter into force on 1 January 2013. A grandfathering rule will apply to advisors that have already been rendering financial advice on that date. Said advisors will be obliged to comply with the new measures as of 1 July 2015.