The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is responsible for concluding treaties. The Treaties Division of the Legal Affairs Department carries out the procedures for approving and publishing treaties: formulation, signature, coordination of approval procedures, ratification, entry into force and publication of treaty texts and data in the Treaty Series (Tractatenblad). The Treaties Division is also responsible for depositary tasks and the publication of consolidated versions of the treaties on the internet.
The legal definition of a treaty is a binding arrangement concluded in writing between states or between states and an international organisation. Whatever its form or its name, whether it is called an agreement, an arrangement, a convention or a protocol, it will still be a treaty. There are three types of treaties: bilateral, multilateral and plurilateral ones. A bilateral treaty is concluded between the Kingdom of the Netherlands and one other party. A multilateral treaty is signed by more than two parties, including the Kingdom of the Netherlands. A plurilateral treaty is a treaty between the Kingdom and a limited group of three or more parties. Treaties can be about almost any subject, ranging from aviation to road transport, taxes, human rights and extradition.
The Kingdom of the Netherlands consists of four parts: the Netherlands, Aruba, Curaçao and Sint Maarten. The Netherlands consists of two parts: the European part of the Netherlands and the Caribbean part of the Netherlands. The Caribbean part of the Netherlands consists of three islands: Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba.
A treaty is signed for the entire Kingdom, after which the individual parts of the Kingdom decide whether the treaty should be effective for them.