1. Each Party shall ensure that licensing requirements, qualification requirements,
licensing procedures, or qualification procedures it adopts or maintains are based on
criteria that preclude the competent authority from exercising its power of
assessment in an arbitrary manner.
2. The criteria referred to in paragraph 1 shall be:
(a) clear and transparent;
(b) objective; and
(c) established in advance and made publicly accessible.
3. The Parties recognise that the exercise of statutory discretion conferred on a minister
with respect to a decision on the granting of an authorisation in the public interest is
not inconsistent with sub-paragraph 2(c), provided that it is exercised consistently
with the object of the applicable statute and not in an arbitrary manner, and that its
exercise is not otherwise inconsistent with this Agreement.
4. Paragraph 3 does not apply to licensing requirements, or qualification requirements
for a professional service.
5. Each Party shall ensure that an authorisation is granted as soon as the competent
authority determines that the conditions for the authorisation have been met, and
once granted, that the authorisation enters into effect without undue delay, in
accordance with the terms and conditions specified therein.
6. Each Party shall maintain or institute judicial, arbitral, or administrative tribunals or
procedures that provide for, at the request of an affected investor or service supplier,
as defined in Articles 8.1 (Definitions) and 9.1 (Definitions), a prompt review of, and
if justified, appropriate remedies for, administrative decisions affecting the supply of
a service or the pursuit of any other economic activity. If such procedures are not
independent of the agency entrusted with the administrative decision concerned, each
Party shall ensure that the procedures are applied in a way that provides for an
objective and impartial review.
7. Each Party shall ensure that licensing procedures or qualification procedures it
adopts or maintains are as simple as possible, and do not unduly complicate or delay
the supply of a service, or the pursuit of any other economic activity.
8. An authorisation fee that an applicant may incur in relation to its application for an
authorisation shall be reasonable and commensurate with the costs incurred, and
shall not in itself restrict the supply of a service or the pursuit of any other economic
9. Authorisation fees do not include payments for auction, the use of natural resources,
royalties, tendering or other non-discriminatory means of awarding concessions, or
mandated contributions to provide a universal service.
10. Each Party shall ensure that licensing procedures, or qualification procedures used by
the competent authority and decisions of the competent authority in the authorisation
process are impartial with respect to all applicants. The competent authority should
reach its decisions in an independent manner and in particular should not be
accountable to any person supplying a service or pursuing any other economic
activity for which the authorisation is required.
11. If specific time periods for authorising applications exist, an applicant shall be
allowed a reasonable period for the submission of an application. The competent
authority shall initiate the processing of an application without undue delay. If
possible, applications should be accepted in electronic format under similar
conditions of authenticity as paper submissions.
12. Authenticated copies should be accepted, if considered appropriate, in place of
13. Each Party shall ensure that the processing of an authorisation application, including
reaching a final decision, is completed within a reasonable timeframe from the
submission of a complete application. Each Party should establish the normal
timeframe for the processing of an application.
14. At the request of an applicant, a Party’s competent authority shall provide, without
undue delay, information concerning the status of the application.
15. If an application is considered incomplete, a Party’s competent authority shall, within
a reasonable period of time, inform the applicant, identify the additional information
required to complete the application, and provide the applicant an opportunity to
16. If a Party’s competent authority rejects an application, it shall inform the applicant in
writing and without undue delay. Upon request of the applicant, the Party’s
competent authority shall also inform the applicant of the reasons the application was
rejected and of the timeframe for an appeal or review against the decision. An
applicant should be permitted, within reasonable time limits, to resubmit an