This article describes the effects that the Hague Adoption Convention had on adoptions from Romania. The aim of the Hague Convention was to guarantee that intercountry adoption would take place in the interest of the child, with respect for his/her fundamental rights, and to prevent the abduction, sale of or trafficking in children. Romania was one of the first countries that ratified this Convention (1994), and adopted in 1997 a Hague compliant adoption law. However, from 1997 to 2001 this convention did not so much protect the rights of the children, but foremost those of the parties in the receiving countries: central authorities, adoption agencies and adoptive parents. It further shows how intercountry adoption developed into a full-grown market, which functions according to the economical laws of Supply and Demand.
The result of the Romanian ban on intercountry adoptions will be discussed, including the consequences with regards to other countries. The article ends with the crucial question: can intercountry adoption be legislated without it leading to a demand-driven child market? This article argues why such is not possible under the current provisions of the 1993 Hague Convention.
For the pdf of the Perverse Effects of the Hague Adoption Convention click here.
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