Memory of slavery: the Central Bank of the Netherlands makes its mea culpa

Slavery exhibition at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, May 12, 2021. AFP - KENZO TRIBOUILLARD

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After Britain's big business, the Dutch Central Bank (DNB) recognizes the important role its early leaders played in slavery, as an independent investigation shows.


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This is one of the consequences of the

Black Lives Matter

movement .

The Central Bank of the Netherlands says it deeply regrets the important role played by many of its early leaders in the slave trade in the 19th century.

According to an independent survey of the early years of the institution, the Dutch took part in the global slave system from the 17th century until 1814, when the transatlantic slave trade was abolished by the Netherlands, the same year the Central Bank was founded. 

Some of the Bank's founders actually benefited from the slave trade.

Eleven of the original 17 investors owned plantations in the overseas colonies of the Caribbean and South America where slaves were exploited.

To read also: 

In the Netherlands, the descendants of slaves in search of their origins 

Also according to the survey, some leaders of the Central Bank of the Netherlands have even worked against the abolition of slavery.

Beyond the recognition of the facts, the Dutch bank could go even further.

She will try to establish whether an apology or some form of compensation would be warranted.

To read also: 

The colonial past is still debated in the Netherlands

To read also

: Slavery, slave trade and abolition


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