Agreement Norway - Aruba

Agreement between the Kingdom of Norway and the Kingdom of the Netherlands, in respect of Aruba, for the exchange of information with respect to taxes.

The Kingdom of Norway, and the Kingdom of the Netherlands, in  respect of Aruba,

Desiring to facilitate the exchange of information with respect  to taxes,

Have agreed as follows:

Article 1

Object and scope of this agreement

  1. The competent authorities of the Contracting Parties  shall provide assistance through exchange of information that is  foreseeably relevant to the administration and enforcement of the  domestic laws of the Contracting Parties concerning taxes covered  by this Agreement. Such information shall include information that is  foreseeably relevant to the determination, assessment and collection  of such taxes, the recovery and enforcement of tax claims, or the  investigation or prosecution of tax matters. Information shall be  exchanged in accordance with the provisions of this Agreement and  shall be treated as confidential in the manner provided in Article  9. The rights and safeguards secured to persons by the laws or administrative  practice of the Requested Party remain applicable to the extent  that they do not unduly prevent or delay effective exchange of information.

  2. As regards the Kingdom of the Netherlands, this Agreement  shall apply only to Aruba.

Article 2

Jurisdiction

A Requested Party is not obligated to provide information which  is neither held by its authorities nor in the possession or control  of persons who are within its territorial jurisdiction.

Article 3

Taxes covered

  1. The taxes which are the subject of this  Agreement are:

    1. in Aruba:

      1. the income tax;

      2. the wage tax;

      3. the profit tax;

      4. the dividend withholding tax;

    2. in Norway:

      1. the tax on general income;

      2. the tax on personal income;

      3. the special tax on petroleum income;

      4. the resource rent tax on income from production of hydroelectric  power;

      5. the withholding tax on dividends;

      6. the tax on remuneration to non-resident artistes, etc.

  2. This Agreement shall also apply to any identical taxes imposed  after the date of signature of this Agreement in addition to or  in place of the existing taxes. This Agreement shall also apply  to any substantially similar taxes imposed after the date of signature  of this Agreement in addition to, or in place of, the existing taxes  if the competent authorities of the Contracting Parties so agree.  Furthermore, the taxes covered may be expanded or modified by mutual  agreement of the Contracting Parties in the form of an exchange  of letters. The competent authorities of the Contracting Parties  shall notify each other of any substantial changes to the taxation and  related information gathering measures covered by this Agreement.

Article 4

Definitions

  1. For the purposes of this Agreement,  unless otherwise defined:

    1. the term «Contracting Party» means  the Kingdom of the Netherlands, in respect of Aruba, or the Kingdom  of Norway as the context requires;

    2. the term «Aruba» means that part of the Kingdom  of the Netherlands that is situated in the Caribbean area and consisting  of the island of Aruba;

    3. the term «Norway» means the Kingdom of Norway,  and includes the land territory and internal waters and the sea  beyond the territorial sea where the Kingdom of Norway, according  to Norwegian legislation and in accordance with international law,  may exercise her rights with respect to the seabed and subsoil and  their natural resources; the term does not comprise Svalbard, Jan Mayen  and the Norwegian dependencies («biland»);

    4. the term «competent authority» means

      1. in the case of Aruba, the Minister of  Finance and Economic Affairs or an authorised representative of  the Minister;

      2. in the case of Norway, the Minister of Finance or the Minister’s  authorised representative;

    5. the term «person» includes an individual,  a company and any other body of persons;

    6. the term «company» means any body corporate  or any entity that is treated as a body corporate for tax purposes;

    7. the term «publicly traded company» means any  company whose principal class of shares is listed on a recognized  stock exchange provided its listed shares can be readily purchased  or sold by the public. Shares can be purchased or sold «by  the public» if the purchase or sale of shares is not implicitly  or explicitly restricted to a limited group of investors;

    8. the term «principal class of shares» means the  class or classes of shares representing a majority of the voting  power and value of the company;

    9. the term «recognised stock exchange» means  any stock exchange agreed upon by the competent authorities of the  Contracting Parties;

    10. the term «collective investment fund or scheme» means  any pooled investment vehicle, irrespective of legal form. The term «public  collective investment fund or scheme» means any collective  investment fund or scheme provided the units, shares or other interests  in the fund or scheme can be readily purchased, sold or redeemed  by the public. Units, shares or other interests in the fund or scheme  can be readily purchased, sold or redeemed «by the public» if the  purchase, sale or redemption is not implicitly or explicitly restricted  to a limited group of investors;

    11. the term «tax» means any tax to which  this Agreement applies;

    12. the term «Applicant Party» means the Contracting  Party requesting information;

    13. the term «Requested Party» means the Contracting  Party requested to provide information;

    14. the term «information gathering measures» means  laws and administrative or judicial procedures that enable a Contracting  Party to obtain and provide the requested information;

    15. the term «information» means any fact, statement  or record in any form whatever;

    16. the term «criminal laws» means all criminal laws  designated as such under domestic law irrespective of whether contained  in the tax laws, the criminal code or other statutes;

    17. the term «criminal tax matters» means  tax matters involving intentional conduct which is liable to prosecution  under the criminal laws of the Applicant Party.

  2. As regards the application of this Agreement at any time  by a Contracting Party, any term not defined therein shall, unless  the context otherwise requires, have the meaning that it has at that  time under the law of that Party, any meaning under the applicable  tax laws of that Party prevailing over a meaning given to the term under  other laws of that Party.

Article 5

Exchange of information upon request

  1. The competent authority of the Requested  Party shall provide upon request information for the purposes referred  to in Article 1. Such information shall be exchanged without regard  to whether the conduct being investigated would constitute a crime  under the laws of the Requested Party if such conduct occurred in  the Requested Party.

  2. If the information in the possession of the competent authority  of the Requested Party is not sufficient to enable it to comply  with the request for information, that Party shall use all relevant  information gathering measures to provide the Applicant Party with  the information requested, notwithstanding that the Requested Party  may not need such information for its own tax purposes.

  3. If specifically requested by the competent authority of  an Applicant Party, the competent authority of the Requested Party  shall provide information under this Article, to the extent allowable  under its domestic laws, in the form of depositions of witnesses  and authenticated copies of original records.

  4. Each Contracting Party shall ensure that its competent authority  for the purposes specified in Article 1 of this Agreement, has the  authority to obtain and provide upon request:

    1. information held by banks, other financial institutions,  and any person acting in an agency or fiduciary capacity including  nominees and trustees;

    2. information regarding the legal and beneficial ownership  of companies, partnerships, trusts, foundations, «Anstalten» and  other persons, including, within the constraints of Article 2, ownership  information on all such persons in an ownership chain; in the case of  trusts, information on settlors, trustees, beneficiaries and protectors;  and in the case of foundations, information on founders, members  of the foundation council and beneficiaries. Further, this Agreement  does not create an obligation on the Contracting Parties to obtain  or provide ownership information with respect to publicly traded  companies or public collective investment funds or schemes unless  such information can be obtained without giving rise to disproportionate  difficulties.

  5. The competent authority of the Applicant Party shall provide  the following information to the competent authority of the Requested  Party when making a request for information under this Agreement  to demonstrate the foreseeable relevance of the information to the  request:

    1. the identity of the person under examination  or investigation;

    2. a statement of the information sought including its nature  and the form in which the Applicant Party wishes to receive the information  from the Requested Party;

    3. the tax purpose for which the information is sought;

    4. the grounds for believing that the information requested  is held in the Requested Party or is in the possession or control  of a person within the jurisdiction of the Requested Party;

    5. to the extent known, the name and address of any person  believed to be in possession of the requested information;

    6. a statement that the request is in conformity with the law  and administrative practices of the Applicant Party, that if the  requested information was within the jurisdiction of the Applicant  Party then the competent authority of the Applicant Party would  be able to obtain the information under the laws of the Applicant  Party or in the normal course of administrative practice and that the  information request is in conformity with this Agreement;

    7. a statement that the Applicant Party has pursued all means  available in its own territory to obtain the information, except  those that would give rise to disproportionate difficulties.

  6. The competent authority of the Requested Party shall forward  the requested information as promptly as possible to the Applicant  Party. To ensure a prompt response, the competent authority of the  Requested Party shall:

    1. confirm receipt of a request in writing  to the competent authority of the Applicant Party and shall notify  the competent authority of the Applicant Party of deficiencies in  the request, if any, within 60 days of the receipt of the request;  and

    2. if the competent authority of the Requested Party has been  unable to obtain and provide the information within 90 days of receipt  of the request, including if it encounters obstacles in furnishing  the information or it refuses to furnish the information, it shall immediately  inform the Applicant Party, explaining the reason for its inability,  the nature of the obstacles or the reasons for its refusal.

Article 6

Spontaneous exchange of information

The Contracting Parties may forward to each other, without prior  request, information of which they have knowledge.

Article 7

Tax examinations abroad

  1. A Contracting Party may allow representatives of  the competent authority of the other Contracting Party to enter  the territory of the first-mentioned Party to interview individuals  and examine records with the written consent of the persons concerned.  The competent authority of the second-mentioned Party shall notify the  competent authority of the first-mentioned Party of the time and  place of the meeting with the individuals concerned.

  2. At the request of the competent authority of one of the  Contracting Parties, the competent authority of the other Contracting  Party may allow representatives of the competent authority of the  first-mentioned Party to be present at the appropriate part of a  tax examination in the second-mentioned Party.

  3. If the request referred to in paragraph 2 is acceded to,  the competent authority of the Contracting Party conducting the  examination shall, as soon as possible, notify the competent authority  of the other Party about the time and place of the examination,  the authority or official designated to carry out the examination and  the procedures and conditions required by the first-mentioned Party  for the conduct of the examination. All decisions with respect to  the conduct of the tax examination shall be made by the Party conducting  the examination.

Article 8

Possibility of declining a request

  1. The Requested Party shall not be required  to obtain or provide information that the Applicant Party would  not be able to obtain under its own laws for purposes of the administration  or enforcement of its own tax laws. The competent authority of the  Requested Party may decline to assist where the request is not made  in conformity with this Agreement.

  2. The provisions of this Agreement shall not impose on a Contracting  Party the obligation to supply information which would disclose  any trade, business, industrial, commercial or professional secret  or trade process. Notwithstanding the foregoing, information of  the type referred to in paragraph 4 of Article 5 shall not be treated  as such a secret or trade process merely because it meets the criteria  in that paragraph.

  3. The provisions of this Agreement shall not impose on a Contracting  Party the obligation to obtain or provide information, which would reveal  confidential communications between a client and an attorney, solicitor  or other admitted legal representative where such communications  are:

    1. produced for the purposes of seeking  or providing legal advice; or

    2. produced for the purposes of use in existing or contemplated  legal proceedings.

  4. The Requested Party may decline a request for information  if the disclosure of the information would be contrary to public  policy (ordre public).

  5. A request for information shall not be refused on the ground  that the tax claim giving rise to the request is disputed.

  6. The Requested Party may decline a request for information  if the information is requested by the Applicant Party to administer  or enforce a provision of the tax law of the Applicant Party, or  any requirement connected therewith, which discriminates against  a national of the Requested Party as compared with a national of the  Applicant Party in the same circumstances.

Article 9

Confidentiality

Any information received by a Contracting Party under this Agreement  shall be treated as confidential and may be disclosed only to persons  or authorities (including courts and administrative bodies) in the  jurisdiction of the Contracting Party concerned with the assessment  or collection of, the enforcement or prosecution in respect of,  or the determination of appeals in relation to, the taxes covered  by this Agreement. Such persons or authorities shall use such information  only for such purposes. They may disclose the information in public  court proceedings or in judicial decisions. The information may  not be disclosed to any other person or entity or authority or any  other jurisdiction without the express written consent of the competent  authority of the Requested Party.

Article 10

Costs

Unless the competent authorities of the Contracting Parties otherwise  agree, ordinary costs incurred in providing assistance shall be  borne by the Requested Party, and extraordinary costs incurred in  providing assistance (including reasonable costs of engaging external  advisors in connection with litigation or otherwise) shall be borne  by the Applicant Party. At the request of either Contracting Party,  the competent authorities shall consult as necessary with regard  to this Article, and in particular the competent authority of the Requested  Party shall consult with the competent authority of the Applicant  Party in advance if the costs of providing information with respect  to a specific request are expected to be significant.

Article 11

Implementation legislation

The Contracting Parties shall enact any legislation necessary  to comply with, and give effect to, the terms of this Agreement.

Article 12

Mutual agreement procedure

  1. The competent authorities of the Contracting Parties  shall jointly endeavour to resolve any difficulties or doubts arising  as to the interpretation or application of this Agreement.

  2. In addition to the endeavours referred to in paragraph 1,  the competent authorities of the Contracting Parties may mutually  determine the procedures to be used under Articles 5, 6 and 7.

  3. The competent authorities of the Contracting Parties may  communicate with each other directly for the purposes of this Article.

Article 13

Entry into force

  1. Each of the Contracting Parties shall  notify the other in writing of the completion of the internal procedures  required by its law for the entry into force of this Agreement.

  2. The Agreement shall enter into force on the first day of  the second month after the receipt of the later of these notifications  and shall thereupon have effect as from that date.

  3. The provisions of this Agreement shall have effect for any  taxable periods, which could still be investigated at the moment  of the information request, according to the laws of the Applicant  Party.

Article 14

Termination

  1. This Agreement shall remain in force  until terminated by a Contracting Party. Either Contracting Party  may terminate the Agreement, through diplomatic channels, by giving  written notice of termination to the other Contracting Party at  least six months before the end of any calendar year.

  2. In such event, the Agreement shall cease to have effect  from the first day of January of the calendar year next following  the end of the six month period.

  3. Notwithstanding any termination of this Agreement, the Contracting  Parties shall remain bound by the provisions of Article 9 with respect  to any information obtained under this Agreement.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the undersigned, being duly authorised thereto  have signed this Agreement.

DONE at Paris, this 10th day of September 2009, in duplicate  in the English language.

For the Kingdom of Norway: For the Kingdom of   the Netherlands, in respect of Aruba:
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