Chapter Twelve-- Financial Services

Chapter Twelve-- Financial Services

Article 12.1:  Scope and Coverage

1. This Chapter applies to measures adopted or maintained by a Party relating to:

(a) financial institutions of another Party;

(b) investors of another Party, and investments of such investors, in financial

institutions in the Party’s territory; and

(c) cross-border trade in financial services.

2. Chapters Ten (Investment) and Eleven (Cross-Border Trade in Services) apply to

measures described in paragraph 1 only to the extent that such Chapters or Articles of such

Chapters are incorporated into this Chapter.   

(a) Articles 10.7 (Expropriation and Compensation), 10.8 (Transfers), 10.11

(Investment and Environment), 10.12 (Denial of Benefits), 10.14 (Special

Formalities and Information Requirements), and 11.12 (Denial of Benefits) are

hereby incorporated into and made a part of this Chapter.  

(b) Section B of Chapter Ten (Investor-State Dispute Settlement) is hereby

incorporated into and made a part of this Chapter solely for claims that a Party has

breached Article 10.7, 10.8, 10.12, or 10.14, as incorporated into this Chapter.

(c) Article 11.10 (Transfers and Payments) is incorporated into and made a part of

this Chapter to the extent that cross-border trade in financial services is subject to

obligations pursuant to Article 12.5.

3.  This Chapter does not apply to measures adopted or maintained by a Party relating to:

(a) activities or services forming part of a public retirement plan or statutory system

of social security; or  

(b) activities or services conducted for the account or with the guarantee or using the

financial resources of the Party, including its public entities,

except that this Chapter shall apply if a Party allows any of the activities or services referred to in

subparagraph (a) or (b) to be conducted by its financial institutions in competition with a public

entity or a financial institution.

 

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4. (a) Subject to subparagraph (c), for two years beginning on the date of entry into

force of this Agreement, this Chapter shall not apply to:

 

(i) measures adopted or maintained by the Dominican Republic relating to

financial institutions of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras, or Nicaragua

to the extent they supply banking services; investors of Costa Rica, El

Salvador, Honduras, or Nicaragua, and investments of such investors, in

such financial institutions in the territory of the Dominican Republic; or

cross-border trade in banking services between the Dominican Republic

and Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras, or Nicaragua; or

(ii) measures adopted or maintained by Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras, or

Nicaragua relating to financial institutions of the Dominican Republic to

the extent they supply banking services; investors of the Dominican

Republic, and investments of such investors, in such financial institutions

in the territory of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras, or Nicaragua; or

cross-border trade in banking services between Costa Rica, El Salvador,

Honduras, or Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic;

(iii) measures adopted or maintained by the Dominican Republic relating to

financial institutions of Guatemala; investors of Guatemala, and

investments of such investors, in such financial institutions in the territory

of the Dominican Republic; or cross-border trade in financial services

between the Dominican Republic and Guatemala; or

(iv) measures adopted or maintained by Guatemala relating to financial

institutions of the Dominican Republic; investors of the Dominican

Republic, and investments of such investors, in such financial institutions

in the territory of Guatemala; or cross-border trade in financial services

between Guatemala and the Dominican Republic.

(b) During the two-year period referred to in subparagraph (a), the Dominican

Republic and each Central American Party shall seek to agree on those measures

described in subparagraph (a) that shall be considered non-conforming measures

pursuant to Article 12.9 and that shall be reflected in their respective Schedules to

Annex III for purposes of modifying their rights and obligations with respect to

each other under this Chapter.

(c) If the Commission approves any such agreement during this period, each relevant

Party’s schedule shall be modified accordingly.  Subparagraph (a) shall cease to

apply as between the Dominican Republic and the relevant Central American

Party on the date the modification takes effect.

 

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Article 12.2:  National Treatment

1. Each Party shall accord to investors of another Party treatment no less favorable than that

it accords to its own investors, in like circumstances, with respect to the establishment,

acquisition, expansion, management, conduct, operation, and sale or other disposition of

financial institutions and investments in financial institutions in its territory.

2. Each Party shall accord to financial institutions of another Party and to investments of

investors of another Party in financial institutions treatment no less favorable than that it accords

to its own financial institutions, and to investments of its own investors in financial institutions,

in like circumstances, with respect to the establishment, acquisition, expansion, management,

conduct, operation, and sale or other disposition of financial institutions and investments.

3. For purposes of the national treatment obligations in Article 12.5.1, a Party shall accord

to cross-border financial service suppliers of another Party treatment no less favorable than that it

accords to its own financial service suppliers, in like circumstances, with respect to the supply of

the relevant service.

Article 12.3:  Most-Favored-Nation Treatment

1. Each Party shall accord to investors of another Party, financial institutions of another

Party, investments of investors in financial institutions, and cross-border financial service

suppliers of another Party treatment no less favorable than that it accords to the investors,

financial institutions, investments of investors in financial institutions, and cross-border financial

service suppliers of any other Party or of a non-Party, in like circumstances.

2.  A Party may recognize prudential measures of another Party or of a non-Party in the

application of measures covered by this Chapter.  Such recognition may be:

(a) accorded unilaterally;

(b) achieved through harmonization or other means; or

(c) based upon an agreement or arrangement with another Party or a non-Party.

3. A Party according recognition of prudential measures under paragraph 2 shall provide

adequate opportunity to another Party to demonstrate that circumstances exist in which there are

or would be equivalent regulation, oversight, implementation of regulation, and, if appropriate,

procedures concerning the sharing of information between the relevant Parties.

4.  Where a Party accords recognition of prudential measures under paragraph 2(c) and the

circumstances set out in paragraph 3 exist, the Party shall provide adequate opportunity to

another Party to negotiate accession to the agreement or arrangement, or to negotiate a

comparable agreement or arrangement.

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Article 12.4:  Market Access for Financial Institutions

 No Party may adopt or maintain, with respect to financial institutions of another Party,

either on the basis of a regional subdivision or on the basis of its entire territory, measures that: 

  (a) impose limitations on:

(i) the number of financial institutions whether in the form of numerical

quotas, monopolies, exclusive service suppliers, or the requirements of an

economic needs test;  

(ii) the total value of financial service transactions or assets in the form of

numerical quotas or the requirement of an economic needs test; 

(iii) the total number of financial service operations or on the total quantity of

financial services output expressed in terms of designated numerical units

in the form of quotas or the requirement of an economic needs test; or

(iv) the total number of natural persons that may be employed in a particular

financial service sector or that a financial institution may employ and who

are necessary for, and directly related to, the supply of a specific financial

service in the form of numerical quotas or the requirement of an economic

needs test; or

(b) restrict or require specific types of legal entity or joint venture through which a

financial institution may supply a service.

For purposes of this Article, “financial institutions of another Party” includes financial

institutions that investors of another Party seek to establish in the territory of the Party.

Article 12.5:  Cross-Border Trade

1. Each Party shall permit, under terms and conditions that accord national treatment, cross-

border financial service suppliers of another Party to supply the services specified in Annex

12.5.1.

2. Each Party shall permit persons located in its territory, and its nationals wherever located,

to purchase financial services from cross-border financial service suppliers of another Party

located in the territory of that other Party or of any other Party.  This obligation does not require

a Party to permit such suppliers to do business or solicit in its territory.  Each Party may define

“doing business” and “solicitation” for purposes of this obligation, provided that those

definitions are not inconsistent with paragraph 1.

3. Without prejudice to other means of prudential regulation of cross-border trade in

financial services, a Party may require the registration of cross-border financial service suppliers

of another Party and of financial instruments. 

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Article 12.6:  New Financial Services1 

 Each Party shall permit a financial institution of another Party to supply any new

financial service that the Party would permit its own financial institutions, in like circumstances,

to supply without additional legislative action by the Party.  Notwithstanding Article 12.4(b), a

Party may determine the institutional and juridical form through which the new financial service

may be supplied and may require authorization for the supply of the service.  Where a Party

requires authorization to supply a new financial service, a decision shall be made within a

reasonable time and the authorization may only be refused for prudential reasons.  

Article 12.7:  Treatment of Certain Information

 Nothing in this Chapter requires a Party to furnish or allow access to:

(a) information related to the financial affairs and accounts of individual customers of

financial institutions or cross-border financial service suppliers; or

(b) any confidential information the disclosure of which would impede law

enforcement or otherwise be contrary to the public interest or prejudice legitimate

commercial interests of particular enterprises.

Article 12.8:  Senior Management and Boards of Directors

1. No Party may require financial institutions of another Party to engage individuals of any

particular nationality as senior managerial or other essential personnel.

2. No Party may require that more than a minority of the board of directors of a financial

institution of another Party be composed of nationals of the Party, persons residing in the

territory of the Party, or a combination thereof.

Article 12.9:  Non-Conforming Measures

1.  Articles 12.2 through 12.5 and 12.8 do not apply to:

(a) any existing non-conforming measure that is maintained by a Party at

(i) the central level of government, as set out by that Party in its Schedule to

Annex III,

(ii) a regional level of government, as set out by that Party in its Schedule to

Annex III, or

 

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  The Parties understand that nothing in Article 12.6 prevents a financial institution of a Party from applying to

another Party to request it to consider authorizing the supply of a financial service that is not supplied in the territory

of any Party.  The application shall be subject to the law of the Party to which the application is made and, for

greater certainty, shall not be subject to the obligations of Article 12.6.

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(iii) a local level of government;

(b) the continuation or prompt renewal of any non-conforming measure referred to in

subparagraph (a); or

(c) an amendment to any non-conforming measure referred to in subparagraph (a) to

the extent that the amendment does not decrease the conformity of the measure, as

it existed immediately before the amendment, with Article 12.2, 12.3, 12.4, or

12.8.2

2. Annex 12.9.2 sets out certain specific commitments by each Party.

3. Annex 12.9.3 sets out, solely for purposes of transparency, supplementary information

regarding certain aspects of financial services measures of a Party that the Party considers are not

inconsistent with its obligations under this Chapter.

4. Articles 12.2 through 12.5 and 12.8 do not apply to any measure that a Party adopts or

maintains with respect to sectors, subsectors, or activities, as set out in its Schedule to Annex III.

5. A non-conforming measure set out in a Party’s Schedule to Annex I or II as a measure to

which Article 10.3 (National Treatment), 10.4 (Most-Favored-Nation Treatment), 11.2 (National

Treatment), 11.3 (Most-Favored-Nation Treatment), or 11.4 (Market Access) does not apply

shall be treated as a non-conforming measure to which Article 12.2, 12.3, or 12.4, as the case

may be, does not apply, to the extent that the measure, sector, subsector, or activity set out in the

Schedule is covered by this Chapter.

Article 12.10:  Exceptions

1.  Notwithstanding any other provision of this Chapter or Chapters Ten (Investment),

Thirteen (Telecommunications), including specifically Article 13.16 (Relationship to Other

Chapters), or Fourteen (Electronic Commerce), and Article 11.1.3 (Scope and Coverage) with

respect to the supply of financial services in the territory of a Party by an investor of another

Party or a covered investment, a Party shall not be prevented from adopting or maintaining

measures for prudential reasons,3 including for the protection of investors, depositors, policy

holders, or persons to whom a fiduciary duty is owed by a financial institution or cross-border

financial service supplier, or to ensure the integrity and stability of the financial system.  Where

such measures do not conform with the provisions of this Agreement referred to in this

paragraph, they shall not be used as a means of avoiding the Party’s commitments or obligations

under such provisions.

 

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  For greater certainty, Article 12.5 does not apply to an amendment to any non-conforming measure referred to in

subparagraph (a) to the extent that the amendment does not decrease the conformity of the measure, as it existed on

the date of entry into force of this Agreement, with Article 12.5.

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  It is understood that the term “prudential reasons” includes the maintenance of the safety, soundness, integrity, or

financial responsibility of individual financial institutions or cross-border financial service suppliers.

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2. Nothing in this Chapter or Chapters Ten (Investment), Thirteen (Telecommunications),

including specifically Article 13.16 (Relationship to Other Chapters), or Fourteen (Electronic

Commerce), and Article 11.1.3 (Scope and Coverage) with respect to the supply of financial

services in the territory of a Party by an investor of another Party or a covered investment,

applies to non-discriminatory measures of general application taken by any public entity in

pursuit of monetary and related credit policies or exchange rate policies.  This paragraph shall

not affect a Party’s obligations under Article 10.9 (Performance Requirements) with respect to

measures covered by Chapter Ten (Investment) or under Article 10.8 (Transfers) or 11.10

(Transfers and Payments).

3. Notwithstanding Articles 10.8 (Transfers) and 11.10 (Transfers and Payments), as

incorporated into this Chapter, a Party may prevent or limit transfers by a financial institution or

cross-border financial service supplier to, or for the benefit of, an affiliate of or person related to

such institution or supplier, through the equitable, non-discriminatory, and good faith application

of measures relating to maintenance of the safety, soundness, integrity, or financial responsibility

of financial institutions or cross-border financial service suppliers.  This paragraph does not

prejudice any other provision of this Agreement that permits a Party to restrict transfers.

4. For greater certainty, nothing in this Chapter shall be construed to prevent the adoption or

enforcement by any Party of measures necessary to secure compliance with laws or regulations

that are not inconsistent with this Chapter, including those relating to the prevention of deceptive

and fraudulent practices or to deal with the effects of a default on financial services contracts,

subject to the requirement that such measures are not applied in a manner which would constitute

a means of arbitrary or unjustifiable discrimination between countries where like conditions

prevail, or a disguised restriction on investment in financial institutions or cross-border trade in

financial services.

Article 12.11:  Transparency

1. The Parties recognize that transparent regulations and policies governing the activities of

financial institutions and cross-border financial service suppliers are important in facilitating

both access of foreign financial institutions and foreign cross-border financial service suppliers

to, and their operations in, each other’s markets.  Each Party commits to promote regulatory

transparency in financial services. 

2. In lieu of Article 18.2.2 (Publication), each Party shall, to the extent practicable: 

(a) publish in advance any regulations of general application relating to the subject

matter of this Chapter that it proposes to adopt; and

(b) provide interested persons and Parties a reasonable opportunity to comment on

the proposed regulations.

3. At the time it adopts final regulations, a Party should, to the extent practicable, address in

writing substantive comments received from interested persons with respect to the proposed

regulations.

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4. To the extent practicable, each Party should allow reasonable time between publication of

final regulations and their effective date.

5. Each Party shall ensure that the rules of general application adopted or maintained by

self-regulatory organizations of the Party are promptly published or otherwise made available in

such a manner as to enable interested persons to become acquainted with them.

6. Each Party shall maintain or establish appropriate mechanisms that will respond to

inquiries from interested persons regarding measures of general application covered by this

Chapter.

7. Each Party’s regulatory authorities shall make available to interested persons the

requirements, including any documentation required, for completing applications relating to the

supply of financial services.

8. On the request of an applicant, a Party’s regulatory authority shall inform the applicant of

the status of its application.  If the authority requires additional information from the applicant, it

shall notify the applicant without undue delay.  

9. A Party’s regulatory authority shall make an administrative decision on a completed

application of an investor in a financial institution, a financial institution, or a cross-border

financial service supplier of another Party relating to the supply of a financial service within 120

days, and shall promptly notify the applicant of the decision.  An application shall not be

considered complete until all relevant hearings are held and all necessary information is received. 

Where it is not practicable for a decision to be made within 120 days, the regulatory authority

shall notify the applicant without undue delay and shall endeavor to make the decision within a

reasonable time thereafter. 

Article 12.12:  Self-Regulatory Organizations

 Where a Party requires a financial institution or a cross-border financial service supplier

of another Party to be a member of, participate in, or have access to, a self-regulatory

organization to provide a financial service in or into the territory of that Party, the Party shall

ensure observance of the obligations of Articles 12.2 and 12.3 by such self-regulatory

organization.

Article 12.13:  Payment and Clearing Systems

 Under terms and conditions that accord national treatment, each Party shall grant

financial institutions of another Party established in its territory access to payment and clearing

systems operated by public entities, and to official funding and refinancing facilities available in

the normal course of ordinary business.  This paragraph is not intended to confer access to the

Party’s lender of last resort facilities.

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Article 12.14:  Domestic Regulation

 Except with respect to non-conforming measures listed in its Schedule to Annex III, each

Party shall ensure that all measures of general application to which this Chapter applies are

administered in a reasonable, objective, and impartial manner. 

Article 12.15:  Expedited Availability of Insurance Services

 The Parties recognize the importance of maintaining and developing regulatory

procedures to expedite the offering of insurance services by licensed suppliers.

Article 12.16:  Financial Services Committee

1. The Parties hereby establish a Financial Services Committee.  The principal

representative of each Party shall be an official of the Party’s authority responsible for financial

services set out in Annex 12.16.1.

2. The Committee shall:

(a) supervise the implementation of this Chapter and its further elaboration;

(b) consider issues regarding financial services that are referred to it by a Party; and

(c) participate in the dispute settlement procedures in accordance with Article 12.19.

All decisions of the Committee shall be taken by consensus, unless the Committee otherwise

decides.

3. The Committee shall meet annually, or as otherwise agreed, to assess the functioning of

this Agreement as it applies to financial services.  The Committee shall inform the Commission

of the results of each meeting.

Article 12.17:  Consultations

1. A Party may request consultations with another Party regarding any matter arising under

this Agreement that affects financial services.  The other Party shall give sympathetic

consideration to the request.  The consulting Parties shall report the results of their consultations

to the Committee.

2.  Consultations under this Article shall include officials of the authorities specified in

Annex 12.16.1.

3. Nothing in this Article shall be construed to require regulatory authorities participating in

consultations under paragraph 1 to disclose information or take any action that would interfere

with specific regulatory, supervisory, administrative, or enforcement matters. 

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4.  Nothing in this Article shall be construed to require a Party to derogate from its relevant

law regarding sharing of information among financial regulators or the requirements of an

agreement or arrangement between financial authorities of two or more Parties.

Article 12.18:  Dispute Settlement

1. Section A of Chapter Twenty (Dispute Settlement) applies as modified by this Article to

the settlement of disputes arising under this Chapter.

2. The Parties shall establish within six months after the date of entry into force of this

Agreement and maintain a roster of up to 28 individuals who are willing and able to serve as

financial services panelists.  Unless the Parties otherwise agree, the roster shall include up to

three individuals who are nationals of each Party and up to seven individuals who are not

nationals of any Party.  The roster members shall be appointed by consensus and may be

reappointed.  Once established, a roster shall remain in effect for a minimum of three years, and

shall remain in effect thereafter until the Parties constitute a new roster.  The Parties may appoint

a replacement where a roster member is no longer available to serve.

3. Financial services roster members, as well as financial services panelists, shall:

(a) have expertise or experience in financial services law or practice, which may

include the regulation of financial institutions; 

(b) be chosen strictly on the basis of objectivity, reliability, and sound judgment; 

(c) be independent of, and not be affiliated with or take instructions from, any Party;

and

(d) comply with a code of conduct to be established by the Commission.

4. When a Party claims that a dispute arises under this Chapter, Article 20.9 (Panel

Selection) shall apply, except that:

(a) where the disputing Parties so agree, the panel shall be composed entirely of

panelists meeting the qualifications in paragraph 3; and 

(b) in any other case, 

(i) each disputing Party may select panelists meeting the qualifications set out

in paragraph 3 or in Article 20.8 (Qualifications of Panelists), and

(ii) if the Party complained against invokes Article 12.10, the chair of the

panel shall meet the qualifications set out in paragraph 3, unless the

disputing Parties otherwise agree.

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5. Notwithstanding Article 20.16 (Non-Implementation – Suspension of Benefits), where a

panel finds a measure to be inconsistent with this Agreement and the measure under dispute

affects:

(a) only the financial services sector, the complaining Party may suspend benefits

only in the financial services sector;

(b) the financial services sector and any other sector, the complaining Party may

suspend benefits in the financial services sector that have an effect equivalent to

the effect of the measure in the Party’s financial services sector; or

(c) only a sector other than the financial services sector, the complaining Party may

not suspend benefits in the financial services sector.

Article 12.19:  Investment Disputes in Financial Services

1. Where an investor of a Party submits a claim under Section B of Chapter Ten

(Investment) against another Party and the respondent invokes Article 12.10, on request of the

respondent, the tribunal shall refer the matter in writing to the Financial Services Committee for

a decision.  The tribunal may not proceed pending receipt of a decision or report under this

Article.

2. In a referral pursuant to paragraph 1, the Financial Services Committee shall decide the

issue of whether and to what extent Article 12.10 is a valid defense to the claim of the investor. 

The Committee shall transmit a copy of its decision to the tribunal and to the Commission.  The

decision shall be binding on the tribunal.

3. Where the Financial Services Committee has not decided the issue within 60 days of the

receipt of the referral under paragraph 1, the respondent or the Party of the claimant may request

the establishment of an arbitral panel under Article 20.6 (Request for an Arbitral Panel).  The

panel shall be constituted in accordance with Article 12.18.  The panel shall transmit its final

report to the Committee and to the tribunal.  The report shall be binding on the tribunal.

4. The Financial Services Committee may decide that, for purposes of a referral pursuant to

paragraph 1, the financial services authorities of the relevant Parties shall make the decision

described in paragraph 2 and transmit that decision to the tribunal and the Commission.  In that

case, a request may be made under paragraph 3 if the relevant Parties have not made the decision

described in paragraph 2 within 60 days of their receipt of the referral under paragraph 1.

5. Where no request for the establishment of a panel pursuant to paragraph 3 has been made

within ten days of the expiration of the 60-day period referred to in paragraph 3, the tribunal may

proceed to decide the matter.

6. For purposes of this Article, tribunal means a tribunal established under Article 10.19

(Selection of Arbitrators).

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Article 12.20:  Definitions

 For purposes of this Chapter: 

cross-border financial service supplier of a Party means a person of a Party that is engaged in

the business of supplying a financial service within the territory of the Party and that seeks to

supply or supplies a financial service through the cross-border supply of such services; 

cross-border trade in financial services or cross-border supply of financial services means

the supply of a financial service:

(a) from the territory of one Party into the territory of another Party, 

(b) in the territory of one Party by a person of that Party to a person of another Party,

or

(c) by a national of one Party in the territory of another Party, 

but does not include the supply of a financial service in the territory of a Party by an investment

in that territory;

financial institution means any financial intermediary or other enterprise that is authorized to do

business and regulated or supervised as a financial institution under the law of the Party in whose

territory it is located;

financial institution of another Party means a financial institution, including a branch, located

in the territory of a Party that is controlled by persons of another Party;

financial service means any service of a financial nature.  Financial services include all

insurance and insurance-related services, and all banking and other financial services (excluding

insurance), as well as services incidental or auxiliary to a service of a financial nature.  Financial

services include the following activities:

Insurance and insurance-related services

(a) Direct insurance (including co-insurance):

(i) life,

(ii) non-life;

(b) Reinsurance and retrocession;

(c) Insurance intermediation, such as brokerage and agency; and

(d) Services auxiliary to insurance, such as consultancy, actuarial, risk assessment,

and claim settlement services.

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Banking and other financial services (excluding insurance)

(e) Acceptance of deposits and other repayable funds from the public;

(f) Lending of all types, including consumer credit, mortgage credit, factoring and

financing of commercial transactions;

(g) Financial leasing;

(h) All payment and money transmission services, including credit, charge, and debit

cards, travelers checks, and bankers drafts;

(i) Guarantees and commitments;

(j) Trading for own account or for account of customers, whether on an exchange, in

an over-the-counter market, or otherwise, the following:

(i) money market instruments (including checks, bills, and certificates of

deposits);

(ii) foreign exchange;

(iii) derivative products including, but not limited to, futures and options;

(iv) exchange rate and interest rate instruments, including products such as

swaps, forward rate agreements;

(v) transferable securities,

(vi) other negotiable instruments and financial assets, including bullion;

(k)  Participation in issues of all kinds of securities, including underwriting and

placement as agent (whether publicly or privately) and provision of services

related to such issues;

(l) Money broking;

(m) Asset management, such as cash or portfolio management, all forms of collective

investment management, pension fund management, custodial, depository, and

trust services;

(n) Settlement and clearing services for financial assets, including securities,

derivative products, and other negotiable instruments;

(o) Provision and transfer of financial information, and financial data processing and

related software by suppliers of other financial services; and

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(p) Advisory, intermediation, and other auxiliary financial services on all the

activities listed in subparagraphs (e) through (o), including credit reference and

analysis, investment and portfolio research and advice, advice on acquisitions and

on corporate restructuring and strategy;

financial service supplier of a Party means a person of a Party that is engaged in the business

of supplying a financial service within the territory of that Party;

 

investment means “investment” as defined in Article 10.28 (Definitions), except that, with

respect to “loans” and “debt instruments” referred to in that Article:

(a) a loan to or debt instrument issued by a financial institution is an investment only

where it is treated as regulatory capital by the Party in whose territory the

financial institution is located; and

(b) a loan granted by or debt instrument owned by a financial institution, other than a

loan to or debt instrument of a financial institution referred to in subparagraph (a),

is not an investment;

for greater certainty, a loan granted by or debt instrument owned by a cross-border financial

service supplier, other than a loan to or debt instrument issued by a financial institution, is an

investment if such loan or debt instrument meets the criteria for investments set out in Article

10.28;

investor of a Party means a Party or state enterprise thereof, or a person of a Party, that attempts

to make, is making, or has made an investment in the territory of another Party; provided,

however, that a natural person who is a dual national shall be deemed to be exclusively a national

of the State of his or her dominant and effective nationality;

new financial service means a financial service not supplied in the Party’s territory that is

supplied within the territory of another Party, and includes any new form of delivery of a

financial service or the sale of a financial product that is not sold in the Party’s territory;

 

person of a Party means “person of a Party” as defined in Article 2.1 (Definitions of General

Application) and, for greater certainty, does not include a branch of an enterprise of a non-Party;

public entity means a central bank or monetary authority of a Party, or any financial institution

owned or controlled by a Party; and

self-regulatory organization means any non-governmental body, including any securities or

futures exchange or market, clearing agency, or other organization or association, that exercises

its own or delegated regulatory or supervisory authority over financial service suppliers or

financial institutions.

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Annex 12.5.1

Cross-Border Trade

Section A:  Costa Rica

Banking and Other Financial Services (Excluding Insurance)

1. For Costa Rica, Article 12.5.1 applies with respect to the provision and transfer of

financial information and financial data processing and related software as referred to in

subparagraph (o) of the definition of financial service, and advisory and other auxiliary services,

excluding intermediation, relating to banking and other financial services as referred to in

subparagraph (p) of the definition of financial service.4

Section B:  The Dominican Republic

Insurance and Insurance-Related Services

1. For the Dominican Republic, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade

in financial services as defined in subparagraph (a) of the definition of cross-border supply of

financial services with respect to:

(a) insurance of risk relating to:

(i) maritime shipping and commercial aviation and space launching and

freight (including satellites), with such insurance to cover any or all of the

following:  the goods being transported, the vehicle transporting the goods

and any liability arising therefrom; and

(ii) goods in international transit;

(b)  reinsurance and retrocession;

(c)  brokerage of insurance risks relating to paragraphs (a) and (b); and

(d)  consultancy, risk assessment, actuarial, and claims settlement services.

 

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  It is understood that advisory services includes portfolio management advice but not other services related to

portfolio management, and that auxiliary services does not include those services referred to in subparagraphs (e)

through (o) of the definition of financial service.

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2.  For the Dominican Republic, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade

in financial services as defined in subparagraph (c) of the definition of cross-border supply of

financial services with respect to insurance services.5

Banking and Other Financial Services (Excluding Insurance)

3. For the Dominican Republic, Article 12.5.1 applies with respect to the provision and

transfer of financial information and financial data processing and related software as referred to

in subparagraph (o) of the definition of financial service, and advisory and other auxiliary

services, excluding intermediation, relating to banking and other financial services as referred to

in subparagraph (p) of the definition of financial service. 6

 

Section C:  El Salvador

Insurance and Insurance-Related Services

1. For El Salvador, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in financial

services as defined in subparagraph (a) of the definition of cross-border supply of financial

services with respect to:

(a) insurance of risk relating to:

(i) maritime shipping and commercial aviation and space launching and

freight (including satellites), with such insurance to cover any or all of the

following:  the goods being transported, the vehicle transporting the

goods, and any liability arising therefrom, and

(ii) goods in international transit;

(b) reinsurance and retrocession;

(c) brokerage of insurance risks relating to paragraphs (a) and (b); and

(d) consultancy, risk assessment, actuarial, and claims settlement services.

 

5

  It is understood that the commitment for cross-border movement of persons is limited to those insurance and

insurance-related services listed in paragraph 1.

6

  It is understood that advisory services includes portfolio management advice but not other services related to

portfolio management, and that auxiliary services does not include those services referred to in subparagraphs (e)

through (o) of the definition of financial service.

12-17

                                               

2. For El Salvador, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in financial

services as defined in subparagraph (c) of the definition of cross-border supply of financial

services with respect to insurance services.7

Banking and Other Financial Services (Excluding Insurance)

3. For El Salvador, Article 12.5.1 applies with respect to:

(a) provision and transfer of financial information as described in subparagraph (o) of

the definition of financial service;

(b) financial data processing as described in subparagraph (o) of the definition of

financial service, subject to prior authorization from the relevant regulator, when

it is required;8 and

(c) advisory and other auxiliary financial services, excluding intermediation, relating

to banking and other financial services as described in subparagraph (p) of the

definition of financial service.9  

Section D:  Guatemala

Insurance and Insurance-Related Services 

1. For Guatemala, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in financial

services as defined in subparagraph (a) of the definition of cross-border supply of financial

services with respect to:

(a) insurance of risk relating to:

(i) maritime shipping and commercial aviation and space launching and

freight (including satellites), with such insurance to cover any or all of the

following:  the goods being transported, the vehicle transporting the

goods, and any liability arising therefrom, and

(ii) goods in international transit;

 

7

  It is understood that the commitment for cross-border movement of persons is limited to those insurance and

insurance-related services listed in paragraph 1.  

8

  It is understood that where the financial information or financial data referred to in subparagraphs (a) and (b)

involve personal data, the treatment of such personal data shall be in accordance with El Salvador’s law regulating

the protection of such data.

9

  It is understood that advisory services includes portfolio management advice but not other services related to

portfolio management, and that auxiliary services does not include those services referred to in subparagraphs (e)

through (o) of the definition of financial service.

12-18

                                               

(b) reinsurance and retrocession;

(c) insurance intermediation such as brokerage and agency only for the services

indicated in paragraphs (a) and (b); and 

(d) services auxiliary to insurance as referred to in subparagraph (d) of the definition

of financial service.

2. For Guatemala, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in financial

services as defined in subparagraph (c) of the definition of cross-border supply of financial

services with respect to insurance services.10 

Banking and Other Financial Services (Excluding Insurance)

3. For Guatemala, Article 12.5.1 applies with respect to the provision and transfer of

financial information and financial data processing and related software as referred to in

subparagraph (o) of the definition of financial service, and advisory and other auxiliary services,

excluding intermediation, relating to banking and other financial services as referred to in

subparagraph (p) of the definition of financial service.11

Section E:  Honduras

Insurance and Insurance-Related Services 

1. For Honduras, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in financial

services as defined in subparagraph (a) of the definition of cross-border supply of financial

services with respect to:

(a) insurance of risk relating to:

(i) maritime shipping and commercial aviation and space launching and

freight (including satellites), with such insurance to cover any or all of the

following:  the goods being transported, the vehicle transporting the

goods, and any liability arising therefrom, and

(ii) goods in international transit;

(b) reinsurance and retrocession;

 

10

  It is understood that the commitment for cross-border movement of persons is limited to those insurance and

insurance-related services listed in paragraph 1.

11

  It is understood that advisory services includes portfolio management advice but not other services related to

portfolio management, and that auxiliary services does not include those services referred to in subparagraphs (e)

through (o) of the definition of financial service.

12-19

                                               

(c) insurance intermediation such as brokerage and agency only for the services

indicated in paragraphs (a) and (b); and 

(d) services auxiliary to insurance as referred to in subparagraph (d) of the definition

of financial service.

2. For Honduras, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in financial

services as defined in subparagraph (c) of the definition of cross-border supply of financial

services with respect to insurance services.12 

Banking and Other Financial Services (Excluding Insurance)

3. For Honduras, Article 12.5.1 applies with respect to the provision and transfer of

financial information and financial data processing and related software as referred to in

subparagraph (o) of the definition of financial service, and advisory and other auxiliary services,

excluding intermediation, relating to banking and other financial services as referred to in

subparagraph (p) of the definition of financial service.13

Section F:  Nicaragua

Insurance and Insurance-Related Services 

1. For Nicaragua, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in financial

services as defined in subparagraph (a) of the definition of cross-border supply of financial

services with respect to:

(a) insurance of risk relating to:

(i) maritime shipping and commercial aviation and space launching and

freight (including satellites), with such insurance to cover any or all of the

following:  the goods being transported, the vehicle transporting the

goods, and any liability arising therefrom, and

(ii) goods in international transit;

(b) reinsurance and retrocession;

(c) brokerage of insurance risks relating to paragraphs (a)(i) and (a)(ii); and

 

12

  It is understood that the commitment for cross-border movement of persons is limited to those insurance and

insurance-related services listed in paragraph 1.

13

  It is understood that advisory services includes portfolio management advice but not other services related to

portfolio management, and that auxiliary services does not include those services referred to in subparagraphs (e)

through (o) of the definition of financial service.

12-20

                                               

(d) services auxiliary to insurance as referred to in subparagraph (d) of the definition

of financial services.14

2. For Nicaragua, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in financial

services as defined in subparagraph (c) of the definition of cross-border supply of financial

services with respect to insurance services.15 

Banking and Other Financial Services (Excluding Insurance)

3. For Nicaragua, Article 12.5.1 applies with respect to:

(a) the provision and transfer of financial information as described in subparagraph

(o) of the definition of financial service; 

(b) financial data processing as described in subparagraph (o) of the definition of

financial service, subject to prior authorization from the relevant regulator, as

required;16 and

(c) advisory and other auxiliary financial services, excluding intermediation and

credit reference and analysis, relating to banking and other financial services as

described in subparagraph (p) of the definition of financial service.17

 

Section G:  United States

Insurance and Insurance-Related Services 

1. For the United States, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in

financial services as defined in subparagraph (a) of the definition of cross-border supply of

financial services with respect to:

(a) insurance of risks relating to:

(i) maritime shipping and commercial aviation and space launching and

freight (including satellites), with such insurance to cover any or all of the

 

14

  For greater certainty, it is understood that these auxiliary services will only be provided to an insurance supplier.

15

  It is understood that the commitment for cross-border movement of persons is limited to those insurance and

insurance-related services listed in paragraph 1.

16

  It is understood that Nicaragua’s law regulating protection of information applies where the financial information

or financial data processing referred to in subparagraphs (a) and (b) involves such protected information.  Protected

information includes, but is not limited to, information regulated under the concept of banking secrecy and personal

information.

17

  It is understood that advisory services includes portfolio management advice but not other services related to

portfolio management, and that auxiliary services does not include those services referred to in subparagraphs (e)

through (o) of the definition of financial service.

12-21

                                               

following:  the goods being transported, the vehicle transporting the

goods, and any liability arising therefrom, and

(ii) goods in international transit; and

(b) reinsurance and retrocession, services auxiliary to insurance as referred to in

subparagraph (d) of the definition of financial service, and insurance

intermediation such as brokerage and agency as referred to in subparagraph (c) of

the definition of financial service.

2. For the United States, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in

financial services as defined in subparagraph (c) of the definition of cross-border supply of

financial services with respect to insurance services.

Banking and Other Financial Services (Excluding Insurance)

3. For the United States, Article 12.5.1 applies with respect to the provision and transfer of

financial information and financial data processing and related software as referred to in

subparagraph (o) of the definition of financial service, and advisory and other auxiliary services,

excluding intermediation, relating to banking and other financial services as referred to in

subparagraph (p) of the definition of financial service.18  

 

18

  It is understood that advisory services includes portfolio management advice but not other services related to

portfolio management, and that auxiliary services does not include those services referred to in subparagraphs (e)

through (o) of the definition of financial service.

12-22

Annex 12.9.2

Specific Commitments

Section A:  Costa Rica

Portfolio Management

1. Costa Rica shall allow a financial institution (other than a trust company) organized

outside its territory to provide investment advice and portfolio management services, excluding

(a) custodial services, (b) trustee services, and (c) execution services that are not related to

managing a collective investment scheme, to a collective investment scheme located in its

territory.  This commitment is subject to Article 12.1 and to Article 12.5.3.

2. Notwithstanding paragraph 1, Costa Rica may require that the ultimate responsibility for

the management of a collective investment scheme be borne by a “sociedad administradora de

fondos de inversión” constituted according to the Ley Reguladora del Mercado de Valores, No.

7732 of December 17, 1997 in the case of investment funds or an “operadora de pensiones”

constituted according to the Ley de Protección al Trabajador, No. 7983 of  February 18, 2000 in

the case of pension funds and complementary pension funds. 

3. For purposes of paragraphs 1 and 2, collective investment scheme means an investment

fund constituted according to the Ley Reguladora del Mercado de Valores, No. 7732 of

December 17, 1997, or a pension fund or a complementary pension fund constituted according to

the Ley de Protección al Trabajador, No. 7983 of February 18, 2000.

Expedited Availability of Insurance 

4. Costa Rica should endeavor to consider policies or procedures such as:  not requiring

product approval for insurance other than insurance sold to individuals or compulsory insurance;

allowing introduction of products unless those products are disapproved within a reasonable

period of time; and not imposing limitations on the number or frequency of product

introductions.

Section B:  The Dominican Republic

Portfolio Management

1. The Dominican Republic shall allow a financial institution (other than a trust company),

organized outside its territory, to provide investment advice and portfolio management services,

excluding (a) custodial services, (b) trustee services, and (c) execution services that are not

related to managing a collective investment scheme, to a collective investment scheme located in

it territory.  This commitment is subject to Articles 12.1 and 12.5.3. 

12-23

2.   The Parties recognize that the Dominican Republic does not currently have legislation

regulating collective investment schemes.  Notwithstanding paragraph 1, and no later than four

years after the date of entry into force of this Agreement, the Dominican Republic shall

implement paragraph 1 by adopting a Special Law regulating collective investment schemes,

which shall contain a definition of collective investment scheme as specified in paragraph 3.

3. For purposes of paragraphs 1 and 2, collective investment scheme will have the meaning

provided under the Special Law that the Dominican Republic adopts pursuant to paragraph 2. 

Expedited Availability of Insurance

4. It is understood that the Dominican Republic requires prior product approval before the

introduction of a new insurance product.  The Dominican Republic shall provide that once an

enterprise seeking approval for such a product files information with the Dominican Republic’s

regulatory authority, the regulator shall grant approval or issue disapproval in accordance with

the Dominican Republic’s law for the sale of the new product within 30 days.  It is understood

that the Dominican Republic does not maintain any limitations on the number or frequency of

new product introductions.

 

Section C:  El Salvador

Portfolio Management

1. El Salvador shall allow a financial institution (other than a trust company), organized

outside its territory, to provide investment advice and portfolio management services, excluding

(a) custodial services, (b) trustee services, and (c) execution services that are not related to

managing a collective investment scheme, to a collective investment scheme located in the

territory of El Salvador.  This commitment is subject to Article 12.1 and to Article 12.5.3.

2. The Parties recognize that El Salvador does not currently have legislation regulating

collective investment schemes.  Notwithstanding paragraph 1, and no later than four years after

the date of entry into force of this Agreement, El Salvador will implement paragraph 1 by

adopting a Special Law regulating collective investment schemes, which shall contain a

definition of collective investment scheme as specified in paragraph 3.

3. For purposes of paragraphs 1 and 2, collective investment scheme will have the meaning

provided under the Special Law that El Salvador adopts pursuant to paragraph 2.

Foreign Banking

4. El Salvador shall allow banks organized under the laws of El Salvador to establish

branches in the United States, subject to their compliance with relevant U.S. law.  The

Salvadoran regulatory agency will develop and issue prudential and other requirements that such

banks must meet in order for them to obtain authorization to apply for the establishment of

branches in the United States.

12-24

Expedited Availability of Insurance 

5. It is understood that El Salvador requires prior product approval before the introduction

of a new insurance product.  El Salvador shall provide that once an enterprise seeking approval

for such a product files information with El Salvador’s supervisory authority, the regulator shall

grant approval or issue disapproval in accordance with El Salvador’s law for the sale of the new

product within 60 days.  It is understood that El Salvador does not maintain any limitations on

the number or frequency of new product introductions.

 

Section D:  Guatemala

Portfolio Management

1. Guatemala shall allow a financial institution (other than a trust company), organized

outside its territory, to provide investment advice and portfolio management services, excluding

(a) custodial services, (b) trustee services, and (c) execution services not related to managing a

collective investment scheme, to a collective investment scheme located in its territory.  This

commitment is subject to Article 12.1 and to Article 12.5.3.

2. The Parties recognize that Guatemala does not currently allow insurance companies to

manage collective investment schemes.  At such time as Guatemala allows insurance companies

to manage collective investment schemes, Guatemala shall comply with paragraph 1 with regard

to management of such schemes by insurance companies.

3. For purposes of paragraphs 1 and 2, collective investment scheme means an investment

made in accordance with Articles 74, 75, 76, 77, and 79 of the Ley del Mercado de Valores y

Mercancías, Decree No. 34-96 of the Congreso de la República. 

Expedited Availability of Insurance 

4. It is understood that Guatemala requires prior product approval before the introduction of

a new insurance product.  Guatemala shall provide that once an enterprise seeking approval for

such a product files the information with Guatemala’s supervisory authority, the authority shall

grant approval or issue disapproval in accordance with Guatemala’s law for the sale of the new

product within 60 days.  It is understood that Guatemala does not maintain any limitations on the

number or frequency of product introductions.

 

Section E:  Honduras

Portfolio Management

1. Honduras shall allow a financial institution (other than a trust company), organized

outside its territory, to provide investment advice and portfolio management services, excluding

(a) custodial services, (b) trustee services, and (c) execution services that are not related to

12-25

managing a collective investment scheme, to a collective investment scheme located in its

territory.  This commitment is subject to Article 12.1 and to Article 12.5.3. 

2. Notwithstanding paragraph 1, Honduras may require a collective investment scheme

located in its territory to retain ultimate responsibility for the management of such collective

investment scheme or the funds that it manages.

3. For purposes of paragraphs 1 and 2, collective investment scheme will have the meaning

set out in any future laws, regulations, or guidance defining “collective investment scheme.” 

Expedited Availability of Insurance 

4. It is understood that Honduras requires prior product approval before the introduction of

a new insurance product.  Honduras shall provide that once an enterprise seeking approval for

such a product files the information with the Comisión Nacional de Bancos y Seguros, the

Commission shall grant approval according to its law or issue disapproval for the sale of the new

product within 30 days.  It is understood that Honduras does not maintain any limitations on the

number or frequency of product introductions.

 

Section F:  Nicaragua

Portfolio Management

1. Nicaragua shall allow a financial institution (other than a trust company), organized

outside its territory, to provide investment advice and portfolio management services, excluding

(a) custodial services, (b) trustee services, and (c) execution services that are not related to

managing a collective investment scheme or pension fund, to managers of a collective

investment scheme or pension fund located in its territory.  This commitment is subject to Article

12.1 and to Article 12.5.3.

2. Notwithstanding paragraph 1, Nicaragua may require that the ultimate responsibility for

the management of collective investment schemes and pension funds be borne, respectively, by

the managers of such schemes and funds established in its territory.

3. The Parties recognize that Nicaragua does not currently have legislation establishing

collective investment schemes and that its legislation relating to pension funds is not fully

implemented.  Notwithstanding paragraph 1, at such time as Nicaragua adopts legislation,

regulations, or administrative guidance establishing collective investment schemes, Nicaragua

shall comply with paragraph 1 with respect to collective investment schemes and provide a

definition of collective investment scheme to be added to paragraph 5.  Notwithstanding

paragraph 1, at such time as Nicaragua undertakes further implementation relating to pension

funds, Nicaragua shall comply with the obligations of paragraph 1 of this provision with respect

to pension funds.

4. The Parties recognize that Nicaragua does not currently allow insurance companies to

manage collective investment schemes.  Notwithstanding paragraph 1, at such time as Nicaragua

12-26

allows insurance companies to manage a collective investment scheme, Nicaragua shall comply

with paragraph 1 with regard to management of collective investment schemes by insurance

companies.

5. For purposes of paragraphs 1 through 3, pension fund has the meaning established in the

Ley del Sistema de Ahorro para Pensiones, Law No. 340 (published in La Gaceta, Diario

Oficial, No. 72 of 11 April 2000) and its implementing regulations.

Expedited Availability of Insurance 

6. Nicaragua should endeavor to maintain existing opportunities or may wish to consider

policies or procedures such as:  not requiring product approval for insurance other than sold to

individuals or compulsory insurance; allowing introduction of products unless those products are

disapproved within a reasonable period of time; and not imposing limitations on the number or

frequency of product introductions.

Insurance Branching

7. Notwithstanding the nonconforming measures of Nicaragua in Annex III, Section B,

referring to insurance market access, excluding any portion of those non-conforming measures

referring to financial conglomerates and social services, no later than four years after the date of

entry into force of this Agreement, Nicaragua shall allow U.S. insurance suppliers to establish in

its territory through branches.  Nicaragua may choose how to regulate branches, including their

characteristics, structure, relationship to their parent company, capital requirements, technical

reserves, and obligations regarding risk capital and their investments.

 

Section G:  United States

Portfolio Management

1. The United States shall allow a financial institution (other than a trust company),

organized outside its territory, to provide investment advice and portfolio management services,

excluding (a) custodial services, (b) trustee services, and (c) execution services that are not

related to managing a collective investment scheme, to a collective investment scheme located in

its territory.  This commitment is subject to Article 12.1 and to Article 12.5.3.

2. For purposes of paragraph 1, collective investment scheme means an investment

company registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission under the Investment

Company Act of 1940.

Expedited Availability of Insurance 

3. The United States should endeavor to maintain existing opportunities or may wish to

consider policies or procedures such as:  not requiring product approval for insurance other than

insurance sold to individuals or compulsory insurance; allowing introduction of products unless

12-27

those products are disapproved within a reasonable period of time; and not imposing limitations

on the number or frequency of product introductions.

Section H:  Specific Commitments of Costa Rica on Insurance Services

I. Preamble

 The Government of the Republic of Costa Rica:

 reaffirming its decision to ensure that the process of opening its insurance services

sector must be based on its Constitution;

 emphasizing that such process shall be to the benefit of the consumer and shall be

accomplished gradually and based on prudential regulation;  

 recognizing its commitment to modernize the Instituto Nacional de Seguros (INS)

and the Costa Rican legal framework in the insurance sector;

undertakes through this Annex the following specific commitments on insurance services.

II. Modernization of INS and the Costa Rican Legal Framework in the Insurance

Sector

 By no later than January 1, 2007, Costa Rica shall establish an independent insurance

regulatory authority which shall be separate from and not accountable to any supplier of

insurance services.  The decisions and the procedures used by the regulatory authority shall be

impartial with respect to all market participants.  The insurance regulatory authority shall have

adequate powers, legal protection, and financial resources to exercise its functions and powers,19

and treat confidential information appropriately. 

III.     Gradual Market Access Opening Commitments

1. Cross-Border Commitments 

 Costa Rica shall allow insurance service providers of any Party, on a non-discriminatory

basis, to effectively compete to supply directly to the consumer insurance services on a cross-

border basis as provided below:

A. By no later than the date of entry into force of this Agreement, Costa Rica shall

permit the following: 

(i) pursuant to Article 12.5.2, persons located in its territory, and its nationals

wherever located, to purchase any and all lines of insurance (except

                                                

19

  The regulatory authority shall act consistently with the core principles of the International Association of

Insurance Supervisors.

12-28

                                               

compulsory automobile insurance20 and occupational risk insurance21)22

from cross-border insurance service suppliers of another Party located in

the territory of that other Party or of another Party.  This obligation will

not require Costa Rica to permit such suppliers to do business or solicit in

its territory.  Costa Rica may define “doing business” and “solicitation”

for purposes of this obligation, as long as such definitions are not

inconsistent with Article 12.5.1; and

(ii) pursuant to Article 12.5.1, the cross-border supply of or trade in financial

services as defined in subparagraph (a) of the definition of cross-border

supply of financial services in Article 12.20 with respect to: 

(a) insurance risk relating to:

(i) space launching of freight (including satellite), maritime

shipping and commercial aviation, with such insurance to

cover any or all of the following:  the goods being

transported, the vehicle transporting the goods and any

liability arising therefrom; and

(ii) goods in international transit;

(b) retrocession and reinsurance;

(c) services necessary to support global accounts;23

(d) services auxiliary to insurance as referred to in subparagraph (d) of

the definition of financial service;24 and

 

20

  For purposes of this commitment, “compulsory automobile insurance” has the meaning given to that term in

Article 48 of the Ley de Tránsito por Vias Publicas Terrestres, Law No. 7331 of 13 April 1993.  

21

  As referred to in the last paragraph of Article 73 of the Constitución Política de la República de Costa Rica. 

Occupational risk insurance is a compulsory insurance that covers workers under a subordinate labor relationship for

accidents or illnesses occurring as a consequence of their occupation, as well as the direct, immediate, and evident

effects of such accidents and illnesses.

22

  For greater certainty, Costa Rica is not required to modify its regulation of compulsory automobile insurance and

occupational risk insurance, provided that such regulation is consistent with the obligations undertaken in this

Agreement, including this Annex.

23

  For purposes of this subclause,

(a) services necessary to support global accounts means that the coverage of a master (global) insurance

policy written in a territory other than Costa Rica for a multinational client by an insurer of a Party

extends to the operations of the multinational client in Costa Rica; and 

(b) a multinational client is any foreign enterprise majority owned by a foreign manufacturer or service

provider doing business in Costa Rica.  

12-29

(e) insurance intermediation, provided by brokers and agents outside

Costa Rica, such as brokerage and agency as referred to in

subparagraph (c) of the definition of financial services.25

B. By July 1, 2007: 

(a) Costa Rica shall permit the establishment of representative offices; and 

(b) Article 12.5.1 shall apply to the cross-border supply of or trade in financial

services as defined in subparagraph (a) of the definition of cross-border

supply of financial services in Article 12.20 with respect to:

(i) services auxiliary to insurance as referred to in subparagraph (d) of

the definition of financial service;26

(ii) insurance intermediation such as brokerage and agency as referred

to in subparagraph (c) of the definition of financial services;27 and

(iii) surplus lines.28

C. For Costa Rica, Article 12.5.1 applies to the cross-border supply of or trade in

financial services as defined in subparagraph (c) of the definition of cross-border

supply of financial services in Article 12.20 with respect to insurance services.

2. Right of Establishment for Insurance Providers 

 Costa Rica shall, on a non-discriminatory basis, allow insurance service suppliers of any

Party, to establish and effectively compete to supply directly to the consumer insurance services

in its territory as provided below:

                                                                                                                                                             

24

  This clause applies only to the lines of insurance set out in III.1.A.(ii)(a), (b), and (c).

25

  This clause applies only to the lines of insurance set out in III.1.A.(ii)(a), (b), and (c).

26

  This clause applies to all lines of insurance.

27

  This clause applies to all lines of insurance.

28

  Surplus lines of insurance means lines of insurance (products covering specific sets of risks with specific

characteristics, features, and services) that meet the following criteria:

(a) lines of insurance other than those that INS supplies as of the date of signature of this Agreement, or

lines of insurance that are substantially the same as such lines; and

(b) that are sold either (i) to customers with premiums in excess of 10,000 U.S. dollars per year, or (ii) to

enterprises, or (iii) to customers with a particular net worth or revenues of a particular size or number of

employees.  

As of January 1, 2008, surplus lines shall be defined as insurance coverage not available from an admitted company

in the regular market.

12-30

                                               

(a) any and all lines of insurance29 (except compulsory automobile and occupational

risk insurance), no later than January 1, 2008; and 

(b) any and all lines of insurance, no later than January 1, 2011.

For purposes of this commitment Costa Rica shall allow insurance service suppliers to be

established through any juridical form, as provided in Article 12.4(b).  It is understood that Costa

Rica may establish prudential solvency and integrity requirements, which shall be in line with

comparable international regulatory practice.

 

29

  For greater certainty, social security services referred to in the first, second, and third paragraphs of article 73 of

the Constitución Política de la República de Costa Rica and provided by the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social as

of the date of signature of this Agreement are not subject to any commitment included in this Annex.

12-31

Annex 12.9.3

Additional Information Regarding Financial Services Measures

 Each Party indicated below has provided the following descriptive and explanatory

information regarding certain aspects of its financial services measures solely for purposes of

transparency.

Section A:  Costa Rica

 Administrators of pension funds can invest up to 25 per cent of the equity of the fund in

securities issued by foreign financial institutions.  This limit can be increased up to 50 per cent,

provided that real yields of investments of the complementary pension regime are equivalent or

lower than international yields.

Section B:  The Dominican Republic

Banking Services and Other Financial Services (Insurance Excluded)

1. Multipurpose Banks and Credit Entities

(a) In conformity with the Ley Monetaria y Financiera, No. 183-02, November 21,

2002, authorization for the operation of multipurpose banks (commercial banks)

and credit entities (savings and credit banks and credit corporations) requires the

presentation before the Junta Monetaria of an opinion of the Superintendencia de

Bancos based on documents presented by the applicant entity.  The Junta

Monetaria may authorize the establishment of subsidiaries as well as branch

offices, provided there is adequate coordination and exchange of information with

the supervising authorities of the country of origin.

(b) Under no circumstances shall preferred shares grant their holders a greater voting

right than common shares, nor shall holders of preferred shares collect dividends

in advance of or independently from the results of the business year. 

(c) For the purposes of opening a new entity, documentation establishing the

existence and origin of the amount contributed shall be presented before the

Superintendencia de Bancos.  Such amount shall be temporarily deposited in the

Banco Central for the execution of the initial investment plan and may be used to

pay for the acquisition of fixed assets and the necessary expenses of facilities and

initiation of operations.

(d) Multipurpose banks (commercial banks) and credit entities are not allowed to

decrease their paid-up capital without previous authorization of the

Superintendencia de Bancos.  The payment of dividends is subject to compliance

with the requirements established by the Junta Monetaria.

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(e) Savings and Credit Banks may only contract obligations abroad and grant loans in

foreign currency with the prior authorization of the Junta Monetaria.

(f) Representative offices of foreign banks not located in the territory of the

Dominican Republic may not perform financial intermediation activities. 

2. Exchange Agents 

 A prior authorization from the Junta Monetaria is needed to act as an Exchange Agent.

  

3. Securities and Goods Exchanges

(a) All commodities exchanges must receive prior approval from the Consejo

Nacional de Valores.

(b) Securities intermediaries must be authorized to operate by the Superintendencia

de Valores.

(c) Securities Exchanges shall be represented in securities negotiations by natural

persons known as securities brokers who are holders of a credential granted by the

corresponding exchange and registered in the securities market.  To register in the

Registro del Mercado de Valores, securities and individuals must comply with

Law No. 19-00.  Exchanges shall be allowed to sell or rent the right to operate in

an exchange, with the previous approval of the corresponding exchange and the

Superintendencia de Valores.

(d) Securities intermediaries existing before Law No. 19-00 went into effect, that are

members of commodities exchanges and engage solely in the trading of

commodities (securities representatives for commodities), must comply with the

requirements of the law no later than five years from the date it went into effect.   

Services of Insurance and Reinsurance

4. According to Ley sobre Seguros y Fianzas en la República Dominicana, No.146-02, July

22, 2001, a foreign enterprise that wishes to or has the intention of operating in the insurance

business, the reinsurance business, or both, within the Dominican Republic must formulate its

request to the Superintendencia de Seguros, expressing the fields in which it intends to operate in

the Dominican Republic, attaching the following documents:    

(a) certification regarding the enterprise’s domiciles, that of its head office, and the

domicile in the Dominican Republic, which must be previously established;

(b) the profit and loss general statement of its operations during the past five years,

duly approved according to the insurance legislation of the country of origin;

(c) certification of the names and nationalities of the senior managers or directors;

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(d) copy of the proxy given to the legal representative in the Dominican Republic;

(e) certification of the State or Government entity in charge of the operations

performed by the insurance enterprise or enterprises in which their head office or

head offices are located; and

(f) certification of the agreement or agreements taken by the competent authority of

the enterprise stating the decision to extend its business to the Dominican

Republic, and that it shall be responsible for its obligations, whether derived from

its operations in the Dominican Republic or from the law, with both the goods it

owns in the territory of the Dominican Republic, and also with the goods it has in

other countries as far as the laws of such countries allow; and that it will submit to

the laws and courts of the Dominican Republic, expressly renouncing all rights

that might oppose them.  This certification must be translated into Spanish and be

duly processed so that it is fully valid in the Dominican Republic.

5. Applications for insurance, policies, certificates, provisional warrants, modifications or

endorsements, renewal certificates, and other documents related to insurance contracts, as well as

performance bonds, should be written in plain and simple Spanish for ease of understanding.

Reinsurance Located in the Territory of Another Party

6. The Superintendencia de Seguros will communicate to the applicant within a period not

to exceed 30 days, its decision with regard to the required authorization.  If, after this period, the

Superintendencia de Seguros has not reached a decision to this effect, it will be understood that

no objection exists to consider the applicant entity as an accepted reinsurer.    

Pensions

7. In conformity with Ley que Crea el Sistema Dominicano de Seguridad Social,  No. 87-01 

May 9, 2001, the resources of the pension funds must be invested exclusively in the territory of

the Dominican Republic.  Foreign investments in this sector are subject to special rules issued by

the Consejo Nacional de Seguridad Social.

 

Section C:  El Salvador

 With regard to banking:

(a) Holding companies and other foreign financial institutions are subject to

consolidated supervision in accordance with relevant international practice.  The

Superintendencia del Sistema Financiero, subject to the opinion of the Banco

Central, shall issue instructions for determining eligible institutions.

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(b) Banks and other foreign financial institutions must satisfy requirements of

prudential regulation and supervision in their countries of origin in accordance

with relevant international practice. 

(c) To be authorized to establish a branch in El Salvador, a foreign bank must meet

the following criteria:

(i) Establishment:  To obtain the authorization to establish a branch, a foreign

bank must:

(A) prove that its head office is legally established in accordance with

the laws of the country where it is constituted, that such country

subjects the bank to prudential regulation and surveillance in

accordance with international usage on the issue, and that it is

classified as a first-rate bank by an internationally recognized risk

rating company;

(B) prove that under the laws of the country where it is constituted and

its own regulations, it can approve the establishment of branches,

agencies, and offices that satisfy the requirements established by

the Ley de Bancos and that both the head office and the

government authority in charge of oversight of this entity in such

country have appropriately authorized the entity’s operation in El

Salvador;

(C) agree to maintain permanently in El Salvador at least one

representative with full powers to perform all activities and

contracts to be entered into and executed in El Salvador.  The

power must be granted clearly and precisely so as to bind the

represented entity, so that it is wholly responsible in the country

and internationally for all actions taken and contracts signed in El

Salvador and so that it satisfies all the requirements established

under the laws of El Salvador and the laws of the country where

the foreign entity is constituted;

(D) agree to locate and maintain in El Salvador the amount of capital

and capital reserves that the Ley de Bancos requires of El Salvador

banks;

(E) certify that it has been in operation for at least five years and that

the results of its operations have been satisfactory, based on reports

of the oversight entity in the country where the foreign bank is

constituted and of internationally recognized risk rating

companies; and 

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(F) expressly submit to the laws, courts, and authorities of El Salvador,

with regard to the acts it performs and the contracts it signs, or

those that have effect in El Salvador. 

(ii) In such cases, the Superintendencia del Sistema Financiero shall sign

cooperation memoranda with the regulatory agency of the country where

the investing entity is established.

(iii) Foreign banks authorized to operate in El Salvador shall be subject to

inspection and oversight by the Superintendencia del Sistema Financiero,

shall enjoy the same rights and privileges, and will be subject to the same

laws and standards that apply to domestic banks. 

Section D:  Honduras

1. Banking and savings and loan associations may not provide credits to natural persons or

juridical persons domiciled abroad unless the Banco Central de Honduras authorizes the credits.

2. A branch of a foreign bank is not required to have its own Board of Directors or

Administrative Council, but must have at least two representatives domiciled in Honduras.  Such

representatives are responsible for the general direction and administration of the business and

have the legal authority to act in Honduras and to execute and to be responsible for the branch’s

own operations.

 

3. The founding members of financial institutions organized under the laws of Honduras

must be natural persons.

4. The operation, function, servicing, and issuance of any new financial product with a

direct and immediate relation to banking or lending must have the approval of the Comisión

Nacional de Bancos y Seguros.

 5. Shares in a foreign investment fund may be marketed in the territory of Honduras only if

there is a reciprocity agreement at the government level or at the level of the relevant supervisory

authorities of the country of origin of the investment fund and the country in which its shares are

marketed.

6. Corporations that classify risk and choose to organize under Honduran law must be

constituted as sociedades anónimas and must have in Honduras a permanent legal representative

with a power of attorney sufficiently broad to undertake any legal act needed for the supply of

risk classification services in Honduras. 

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Section E:  Nicaragua

1. Nicaragua reserves the right to deny an operating license to a financial institution or

group (other than an insurance financial institution or group) in the event that another Party has

denied or cancelled an operating license to such financial institution or group. 

2. To maintain a branch in Nicaragua, a bank constituted and organized in a foreign country

must: 

(a) be legally authorized and allowed by its bylaws to operate in that foreign country

and to establish branches in other foreign countries; 

(b) prior to establishing such branch, present a certification issued by the supervising

authority of the country in which the bank is constituted and organized, indicating

that authority’s concurrence that the bank may establish a branch in Nicaragua;

and

(c) assign the branch capital that meets minimum requirements. 

Such a branch must have its domicile in Nicaragua. 

3. To maintain a branch in Nicaragua, a non-banking financial institution organized and

constituted under the laws of a foreign country must: 

(a) be legally authorized and allowed by its bylaws to operate in the country in which

it is organized and constituted and to establish branches abroad;

(b) prior to establishing such branch, present a certification issued by the supervising

authority of the country in which such institution is constituted and organized,

indicating that authority’s concurrence with the establishment of a branch in

Nicaragua by such institution; 

(c) assign such branch capital meeting the minimum requirements; and

(d) in the case of a FONCITUR, the capital and all of the funds of the FONCITUR

must be invested in Nicaragua, in projects registered with the Instituto

Nicarag┼▒ense de Turismo. 

Such a branch must have its domicile in Nicaragua. 

4. For purposes of this paragraph and paragraph 3:

(a) non-banking financial institution means an institution that operates as a

recipient of deposits from the public, as a stock exchange or institution related to

a stock exchange; as Almacenes Generales de Depósitos con carácter financiero;

as leasing entities; and as FONCITURs; and

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(b) FONCITUR means a Fondo de Capital de Inversión Turística.

5. A representative office of a foreign bank may place funds in Nicaragua in the form of

loans and investments, and act as information centers for their clients, but is prohibited from

accepting deposits from the public in Nicaragua. 

6. The administrator of a pension fund may invest abroad a maximum of 30 percent of the

assets of the fund.  However, the Superintendencia de Pensiones reserves the right to vary the

investment limits applicable to pension funds administrators at the foreign and national level. 

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Annex 12.16.1

Financial Services Committee

 The authority of each Party responsible for financial services is:

(a) in the case of Costa Rica, the Consejo Nacional de Supervisión del Sistema

Financiero (CONASSIF) and the Ministerio de Comercio Exterior for banking

and other financial services and for insurance;

(b) in the case of the Dominican Republic, the Banco Central de la República

Dominicana in consultation with the Superintendencia de Bancos, the

Superintendencia de Seguros, the Superintendencia de Valores, and the

Superintendencia de Pensiones, as appropiate,

(c)  in the case of El Salvador, the Ministerio de Economía, in consultation with the

corresponding competent authority (Superintendencia del Sistema Financiero,

Superintendencia de Valores, Superintendencia de Pensiones and the Banco

Central de Reserva);

(d) in the case of Guatemala, the Superintendencia de Bancos for banking and other

financial services, the Ministerio de Economía for insurance and securities, and

any other institutions approved by those authorities to participate within the

Financial Services Committee;

(e) in the case of Honduras, the Banco Central de Honduras, the Comisión Nacional

de Bancos y Seguros, and the Secretaría de Estado en los Despachos de Industria

y Comercio;

(f) in the case of Nicaragua, the Ministerio de Fomento, Industria y Comercio, the

Superintendencia de Bancos y otras Instituciones Financieras, the

Superintendencia de Pensiones, and the Ministerio de Hacienda y Crédito

Público, for banking and other financial services and for insurance; and

(g) in the case of the United States, the Department of Treasury for banking and other

financial services and the Office of the United States Trade Representative, in

coordination with the Department of Commerce and other agencies, for insurance,

or their successors.

 

 

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