Exchange of Information
(1) The competent authorities of the Contracting States, shall exchange such information as is necessary for carrying out the provisions of this Convention or for the administration or application of the domestic laws of the Contracting States concerning taxes of every kind and description requested by the Contracting States, one of its political subdivisions or local authorities, insofar as the taxation there under is not contrary to this Convention. The exchange of information shall not be limited by the provisions of Article 1 and Article 2 of this Convention.
(2) Any information received by a Contracting State under the provisions of paragraph (1) of this Article, shall be treated as confidential in the same manner as information obtained under the domestic laws 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 covered by this Convention to which the provisions of paragraph (1) of this Article refers, the enforcement or prosecution in respect of such taxes, or the determination of appeals in relation to them. Such persons or authorities shall use the information only for these purposes. They may disclose the information in public court proceedings or in judicial decisions. Notwithstanding the aforementioned, the information received by a Contracting State may be used for other purposes, when such use is allowed under the laws of the State which provides the information and authorized by the competent authority of that State.
(3) In no case shall the provisions of paragraphs (1) and (2), be construed so as to impose on a Contracting State the obligation:
- (a) to take administrative measures at variance with the laws and administrative practices of either of the Contracting States;
- (b) to supply information that is prohibited under the laws or in the normal course of administration of either of the Contracting States;
- (c) to supply information that would disclose any trade, business, industrial, commercial or professional secret or trade process or information, the disclosure of which would be contrary to public policy.
(4) Where a Contracting State requests information in accordance with the provisions of this Article, the other Contracting State shall endeavor to obtain the information pertaining to such request in the same manner as if its own taxes were at stake, even if the information is not needed by such Contracting State at that time. The previous requirement shall be restricted for the provisions of paragraph (3) except when such limitations hinder a Contracting State from providing information solely in the absence of national interest.
(5) In no case shall the provisions of paragraph (3) be interpreted to allow a Contracting State to deny the supply of information that solely operates in the power of banks, other financial institutions, or any person who acts in a representative or fiduciary capacity or that is related to the property rights of a person.