Chapter Fourteen-- Electronic Commerce

Chapter Fourteen-- Electronic Commerce

Article 14.1:  General

 

1. The Parties recognize the economic growth and opportunity that electronic commerce

provides, the importance of avoiding barriers to its use and development, and the applicability of

WTO rules to measures affecting electronic commerce.

 

2. For greater certainty, nothing in this Chapter shall be construed to prevent a Party from

imposing internal taxes, directly or indirectly, on digital products, provided they are imposed in a

manner consistent with this Agreement.

 

Article 14.2:  Electronic Supply of Services

 

For greater certainty, the Parties affirm that measures affecting the supply of a service

using electronic means fall within the scope of the obligations contained in the relevant

provisions of Chapters Ten (Investment), Eleven (Cross-Border Trade in Services), and Twelve

(Financial Services), subject to any exceptions or non-conforming measures set out in this

Agreement, which are applicable to such obligations.

 

Article 14.3:  Digital Products

 

1. No Party may impose customs duties, fees, or other charges on or in connection with the

importation or exportation of digital products by electronic transmission. 

 

2. For purposes of determining applicable customs duties, each Party shall determine the

customs value of an imported carrier medium bearing a digital product based on the cost or value

of the carrier medium alone, without regard to the cost or value of the digital product stored on

the carrier medium.

 

3. No Party may accord less favorable treatment to some digital products transmitted

electronically than it accords to other like digital products transmitted electronically:

 

(a) on the basis that

 

(i) the digital products receiving less favorable treatment are created,

produced, published, stored, transmitted, contracted for, commissioned, or

first made available on commercial terms outside its territory; or

 

(ii)   the author, performer, producer, developer, or distributor of such digital

products is a person of another Party or non-Party,

 

 

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 or

 

(b) so as otherwise to afford protection to the other like digital products that are

created, produced, published, stored, transmitted, contracted for, commissioned,

or first made available on commercial terms in its territory.1

 

4. No Party may accord less favorable treatment to digital products transmitted

electronically:

 

(a) that are created, produced, published, stored, transmitted, contracted for,

commissioned, or first made available on commercial terms in the territory of

another Party than it accords to like digital products transmitted electronically that

are created, produced, published, stored, transmitted, contracted for,

commissioned, or first made available on commercial terms in the territory of a

non-Party; or

 

(b) whose author, performer, producer, developer, or distributor is a person of another

Party than it accords to like digital products transmitted electronically whose

author, performer, producer, developer, or distributor is a person of a non-Party.

 

5. Paragraphs 3 and 4 do not apply to any non-conforming measure described in Articles

10.13 (Non-Conforming Measures), 11.6 (Non-Conforming Measures), or 12.9 (Non-

Conforming Measures). 

 

Article 14.4:  Transparency

 

Each Party shall publish or otherwise make available to the public its laws, regulations,

and other measures of general application that pertain to electronic commerce.

 

Article 14.5:  Cooperation

 

Recognizing the global nature of electronic commerce, the Parties affirm the importance

of:

 

(a) working together to overcome obstacles encountered by small and medium

enterprises in using electronic commerce;

 

(b) sharing information and experiences on laws, regulations, and programs in the

sphere of electronic commerce, including those related to data privacy, consumer

confidence in electronic commerce, cyber-security, electronic signatures,

intellectual property rights, and electronic government;

 

                                                          

1

  For greater certainty, this paragraph does not provide any right to a non-Party or a person of a non-Party.  

 

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(c) working to maintain cross-border flows of information as an essential element in

fostering a vibrant environment for electronic commerce;

 

(d) encouraging the private sector to adopt self-regulation, including through codes of

conduct, model contracts, guidelines, and enforcement mechanisms that foster

electronic commerce; and

 

(e) actively participating in hemispheric and multilateral fora to promote the

development of electronic commerce.

 

Article  14.6:  Definitions

 

 For purposes of this Chapter:

 

carrier medium means any physical object capable of storing the digital codes that form a

digital product by any method now known or later developed, and from which a digital product

can be perceived, reproduced, or communicated, directly or indirectly, and includes an optical

medium, a floppy disk, and a magnetic tape;

 

digital products means computer programs, text, video, images, sound recordings, and other

products that are digitally encoded;2

 

electronic means means employing computer processing; and

 

electronic transmission or transmitted electronically means the transfer of digital products

using any electromagnetic or photonic means.

                                                          

2

  For greater certainty, digital products do not include digitized representations of financial instruments.