1. The Parties reaffirm their rights and obligations with respect to regulatory measures under the TBT Agreement, the SPS Agreement, the GATT 1994 and the GATS.
2. The Parties are committed to ensure high levels of protection for human, animal and plant life or health, and the environment in accordance with the TBT Agreement, the SPS Agreement, the GATT 1994, the GATS, and this Agreement.
3. The Parties recognise the value of regulatory cooperation with their relevant trading partners both bilaterally and multilaterally. The Parties will, whenever practicable and mutually beneficial, approach regulatory cooperation in a way that is open to participation by other international trading partners.
4. Without limiting the ability of each Party to carry out its regulatory, legislative and policy activities, the Parties are committed to further develop regulatory cooperation in light of their mutual interest in order to:
(a) prevent and eliminate unnecessary barriers to trade and investment;
(b) enhance the climate for competitiveness and innovation, including by pursuing regulatory compatibility, recognition of equivalence, and convergence; and
(c) promote transparent, efficient and effective regulatory processes that support public policy objectives and fulfil the mandates of regulatory bodies, including through the promotion of information exchange and enhanced use of best practices.
5. This Chapter replaces the Framework on Regulatory Co-operation and Transparency between the Government of Canada and the European Commission, done at Brussels on 21 December 2004, and governs the activities previously undertaken in the context of that Framework.
6. The Parties may undertake regulatory cooperation activities on a voluntary basis. For greater certainty, a Party is not required to enter into any particular regulatory cooperation activity, and may refuse to cooperate or may withdraw from cooperation. However, if a Party refuses to initiate regulatory cooperation or withdraws from cooperation, it should be prepared to explain the reasons for its decision to the other Party.