Exchange of Information
(1) The competent authorities of the Contracting States shall exchange such information as is deemed necessary for carrying out the provisions of this Convention, or for the administration or application of the domestic Law, relating to taxes of every kind or description imposed on behalf of the Contracting States, their Federal States, political subdivisions, or local entities, insofar as the taxation there under is not contrary to the Convention. The exchange of information shall not be limited by Articles 1 and 2 of this Convention.
(2) Any information derived by a Contracting State, pursuant to paragraph (1) of this Article, shall be treated as confidential in the same manner as information obtained under the domestic Law of that State, and shall be disclosed only to persons or authorities (including courts and administrative bodies) concerned with the assessment or collection of the taxes referred to in paragraph (1) of this Article, of the enforcement or prosecution in respect of these taxes, or the determination of appeals related to the same, or of the supervision of such activities. The aforementioned persons or authorities shall only use this information for such purposes. They may disclose the information in public court proceedings or in judicial decisions. Notwithstanding the preceding provisions, such information may be used for other purposes where, in compliance with the law of both States, it is possible to use such information in this manner and the competent authorities of the State providing the information are in convention with such use.
(3) In no case shall the provisions of paragraphs (1) and (2) of this Article be construed so as to impose upon a Contracting State the obligation:
- (a) to carry out administrative measures at variance with the laws and administrative practice of either of the Contracting States;
- (b) to supply information that is not obtainable under the laws or in the normal course of the administration of either of the Contracting States;
- (c) to supply information which would disclose any trade, business, industrial, commercial or professional secret or trade process, or information, the disclosure whereof would be contrary to public policy (ordre public).
(4) When Contracting State requests information, pursuant to this Article, the other Contracting State shall use all available means for collecting such information for the purpose of complying with the request, even when the other Contracting State may not necessarily need such information for their own tax purposes. The preceding obligation shall be limited by what is set forth in paragraph (3) of this Article, but on no account shall the Contracting States construe such limitations as the basis for denying the exchange of information, specifically due to the lack of national interest in the same.
(5) The provisions of paragraph (3) of this Article shall in no case be construed so as to preclude a Contracting State from supplying information solely because it is held by banks, other financial institutions or by any person acting as a representative or trustee, including appointed agents, or by reason of its connection to shares or holdings of a person.