Iranian Legal Newsletter

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Contents:

Iran Concedes to the Deliberations of the 25th Congress of the Universal Postal Union
Nourlaw.com-Tehran-8 March 2017- According to the legislation published in today’s edition of the Official Gazette, the Iranian parliament in its session of 10/11/1395 (29 January 2017) passed the Law of Approval of Resolution and Decisions of the 25th Congress of the Universal Postal Union (adopted in Doha 2012). The law stipulates in its preface that any further approvals should also be made by parliament in line with Principle 77 of the Iranian Constitution and with respect to resolving the disputes between the member countries through the arbitration procedure foreseen in Article 153 of the General Regulations of the Universal Postal Union (UPU), Principle 139 of the Constitutional Law should be also honored, according to which reference to any such arbitration requires the pre-consent of parliament.
Established in 1874, the UPU, with its headquarters in the Swiss capital Berne, is the second oldest international organization. The UPU with its 192 member states is the primary forum for cooperation among postal sector constituents worldwide. It helps to ensure a truly universal network of up-to-date products and services.
The organization plays an advisory, mediation and liaison role and provides technical assistance where needed. It sets the rules for international mail exchanges and makes recommendations to stimulate growth in mail, parcel and financial services volumes and improving quality of service for customers.
Iran entered the UPU on 1 September 1877.
CBI Sets Rules for Forex Operations of Non-banking Credit Institutes
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 18 January 2017- The Central Bank of the Islamic Republic of Iran (CBI) in its resolution No.95/344396 dated 29/10/1395 has set out rules for non-banking credit institutes to perform foreign exchange operations.
According to Article 4 of the resolution, the credit institutes are allowed to render forex services in three stages. Some of the services are: purchase, sale and transfer of forex; Opening saving accounts; issuance of documentary credit and bills of exchange for export and import; granting a substantial list of all types of guarantees; Investment in all types of negotiable papers; representing foreign credit institutes; concluding finance and refinance contracts; taking part in inter-bank forex markets; issue of negotiable instruments such as Participation Papers and Sukuk bonds.
Participation Paper is a tradable Islamic bond in Iran and according to Financial Times Lexicon, Sukuk bonds are structured in such a way as to generate returns to investors without infringing Islamic law (that prohibits riba or interest). Sukuk represents undivided shares in the ownership of tangible assets relating to particular projects or special investment activity.
Iranian and Foreign JV Companies Considered Sole Beneficiaries for Receiving Bank Facilities
Nourlaw.com-Tehran-17 January 2017- All the companies formed in Iran in partnership between Iranians and foreigners, wherein the foreign investment is not less than 50%, shall be considered a sole beneficiary for a maximum of three years with respect to undertaking responsibility and receiving facilities from Iranian banks, provided the share of the foreign partner remains at least 50%. during the stated period of time. The ruling was published in the circular letter No. 95/343157 dated 28/10/1395 (17 January 2017) of the Central Bank of the Islamic Republic of Iran (CBI).
According to the letter, notified to all Iranian governmental and private banks and non-banking institutes, the decision was made to promote foreign investment for coping with the current economic stagnation.
Exemption of Payment of Customs Duty Shall not Apply to Import of Second hand Foreign Machinery
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 16 January 2017- Speaker of the Iranian parliament, in compliance with his legal authority, has opined that the section relating to customs duty exemption in Decree No. H51052 T/62111 dated 25/5/1395 (15 August 2016) is illegal and consequently should be removed from the decree. The opinion was published in today’s Official Gazette.
The speaker has stated in his letter to the Iranian president that: “Whereas the exemptions foreseen in Article 119 of the Law of Customs Affairs- approved in 1390 (2011) and other related laws and regulations have been specified and “Second Hand Foreign Machinery” described in Part 8 of Clause C of the Decree, is not included in the exemptions listed by the legislators, therefore the aforesaid part which increases the number of the instances of exemption of customs duties is in violation of the law”.
Iran and Russia Sign Agreement on Mutual Promotion and Protection of Investments
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 16 January 2017- The Law of Agreement on Mutual Promotion and Protection of Investment between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Government of the Russian Federation was passed on 24 Aban 1395 (14 November 2016) by the Iranian parliament. The Official Gazette published the text of the legislation today.
In the preface of the 12-article accord it is stated that: “The Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Government of the Russian Federation, called hereinafter the “Contracting Parties”, desiring to consolidate their economic cooperation for securing the interests of the nationals of the Contracting Parties; utilizing economic resources and potential possibilities in the area of investment and creating and safeguarding appropriate conditions for investments of the investors of the Contracting Parties in their territories” have concluded the Agreement.
Article 2 of the Agreement has set the areas of mutual investments as follows: Movable and immovable assets and related rights; Shares or any type of partnership in the capital of companies; Intellectual property rights especially with respect to copyright, patent, industrial designs, trademarks, and know-how; Rights granted by law or contracts in line with the laws and regulations of the Parties such as the rights relating to exploitation, development, extraction and use of natural resources.
Various sections of the Agreement are: Definitions; Promotion and Admission of Investment; Treatment of Investment; Confiscation and Compensation of Damages; Compensation of Losses; Payment Transfers; Substitution; Scope of Applicability of the Agreement; Settlement of Disputes; Consultation; Enforcement and Duration.
The Agreement shall be valid for 10 years and automatic extension of 5-year periods, unless terminated by the written request of each party.
Foreign Branches and Representative Offices Obliged to Render Audited Financial Statements
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 15 January 2017- In compliance with Article 272 of the Direct Taxation Act, all the branches and representative offices of foreign companies which have been registered in Iran in accordance with the Law for Allowing the Registration of a Branch or Representative of Foreign Companies of 1997, are obliged to render audited financial statements along with submission of tax declarations every year.
In a public notice carried in the Official Gazette today, the Tax Affairs Organization declared that “in compliance with Article 272 of the amendments dated 31/4/1394 ( 22 July 2015) made by the parliament to the Direct Taxation Act, all production, trade and service companies listed here below are obliged to render, along with submission of their yearly tax declaration, the financial statements audited by the Audit Organization or the audit firms of the Iranian Association of Certified Public Accounts (IACPA). Breaching this order carries with it a penalty equal to 20% of the amount of the applicable tax”.
In addition to the foreign branches and representative offices referred to in the aforesaid list, the companies on the stock exchange, public joint stock companies and their affiliated companies, companies with gross revenue exceeding 50 billion rials per year and some other entities, are bound to render audited financial statements.
Economic Cooperation Agreement Concluded Between Iran and Latvia
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 3 January 2017- The Iranian parliament On 2 Azar 1395 (22 November 2016) passed The Law of Agreement on Economic Cooperation between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Government of the Republic of Latvia. The text of the Agreement was carried in the Official Gazette today.
In Article 2 of the 9- article accord the areas of cooperation have been listed as: Industry; Energy; Transport; Science, Technology and Innovation; Protection of Environment; Agriculture; Tourism; Education; Healthcare
Iran and the Czech Republic Conclude Economic Cooperation Agreement
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 3 January 2017- The Iranian parliament On 2 Azar 1395 (22 November 2016) passed The Law of Agreement on Economic Cooperation between the Islamic Republic of Iran and The Czech Republic. The Official Gazette published the text of the legislation today.
In the preface of the 6-article accord, it is asserted that, “The government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the government of the Czech Republic, inspired by past friendly relations and sincere links which are still ongoing between the two countries, and desiring to develop and expand the economic, industrial, technical and technological cooperation on the basis of meeting mutual interests; and understanding the necessity of having a suitable legal framework for the relationship of Iran and the Czech Republic ” have chosen to draw up an agreement in this respect.
The subjects detailed in the Agreement are: Aims; Economic Cooperation; Joint Commission; Amendments; Settlement of Disputes, Final Provisions.
Avoidance of Double Taxation Agreement Concluded Between Iran and Morocco
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 3 January 2017- On 24 Aban 1395 (14 November 2016) Iranian lawmakers approved The Law of Agreement Between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kingdom of Morocco for Avoidance of Double Taxation Respecting Revenue Tax . The law was published in the Official Gazette of today.
The 29-article agreement includes subjects listed below: Persons subject to the Agreement; Taxes subject to the Agreement; General Definitions; Resident; Permanent Seat; Revenues Accruing from Immovable Assets; Business Revenues; International Transport; Establishments Affiliated to Governments; Dividends; Financial Expenses; Concessions; Investment Proceeds; Independent Personal Services; Non-independent Personal Services; Fees of Managers and High Ranking Authorities; Artists and Athletics Affairs; Retirement Remuneration and Social Security Payments; Governmental Services; Students and Trainees; Teachers and Researchers; Other Revenues; Procedure of Deletion of Double Taxation; Non-discrimination; Manner of Mutual Agreement; Exchange of Information; Diplomatic and Consular Missions; Enforcement Termination.
The Law Sets Rules for Iran and Russia’s Mutual Administrative Cooperation in Customs Affairs
Nourlw.com-Tehran- 3 January 2017- According to a 20-article agreement approved by the Iranian parliament on 2 Azar 1395 (22 November 2016), Iran and Russia have undertaken to cooperate in the customs affairs of the two countries. In the preface of the Law of Agreement between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Government of the Russian Federation for Mutual Administrative Cooperation and Assistance in Customs Affairs, which was published today in the Official Gazette, it is stated that, “The Islamic Republic of Iran and the Russian Federation which are called hereinafter the Parties, with due consideration of the importance in the confidence of accurate evaluation of customs duties, taxes and other levies and charges regarding import and export of goods; and for being assured of proper execution of the measures relating to prohibition, restrictions and controlling of import and export goods; and realizing that violation of customs laws of the Parties shall damage their security and cultural, social, commercial, financial and economic interests; and understanding the necessity of international cooperation in the areas of the subjects pertaining to implementation of customs laws of the countries of the Parties; and understanding that taking actions against customs violations could be possible through close cooperation of their customs; and in compliance with the recommendations of the Customs Cooperation Council” have concluded the agreement.
The customs accord between Iran and Russia contains the following subjects: Definitions; Scope of Applicability; Facilitation of Customs Formalities, Technical Assistance, Information Relating to Calculation of Customs Receivables, Information Exchange, Automatic Exchange of Information, Types of Assistance, Special Cases of Mutual Assistance, Controlled Delivery of Goods, Experts and Witnesses, Requests, Investigation, Conditions for Presences of Officers, Confidentiality of Information, Instances of Exception of Assistance Commitment, Costs, Territorial Implementation of the Agreement, Disputes and Claims, Enforcement and Termination of the Agreement.
Economic Cooperation Agreement Formed between Iran and Croatia
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 3 January 2017- The Official Gazette reported today that the Iranian parliament On 2 Azar 1395 (22 November 2016) passed The Law of Agreement on Economic Cooperation between The Islamic Republic of Iran and The Republic of Croatia.
In Article 1 of the accord it is stated that the contracting parties on the basis of mutual interests and in compliance with their laws and regulations, shall promote development of economic cooperation in all areas and sections of economy.
According to Article 2, the projects to be implemented by the parties are in the following fields: Transport (road, air, sea, rail); Construction and Infrastructure; Energy and Power Industry; Oil, Gas, Petrochemical and Related Industries; Light and Heavy Industries; Agriculture; Tourism; SMEs, Cooperation Between the Companies; Other Fields of Economic and Industrial Cooperation by Mutual Agreement.
In the 9-article agreement, the following titles are tackled: Economic Cooperation, Implementation of Projects; Representative Offices, Branches and Joint Chambers; Exchange of Information; Joint Commission; Membership in International Organizations; Amendment of the Agreement; Settlement of Disputes; Final Provisions.
Conclusion of Agreement for Iran and Korea’s Mutual Administrative Cooperation in Customs Affairs
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 3 January 2017- According to a 20-article agreement approved by Iranian parliament on1 Dey 1395 (21 December 2016), Iran and the Republic of Korea have undertaken to cooperate in customs affairs of the two countries.
the Law of Agreement between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Government of the Republic of Korea for Mutual Administrative Cooperation and Assistance in Customs Affairs, which was published today in the Official Gazette, contains the following subjects: Definitions, Scope of Applicability, Scope of Assistance; Technical Assistance; Special Cases of Mutual Assistance; Experts and witnesses; Correspondence Respecting the Requests; Execution of Requests; Confidentiality of Information; Personal Data; Exceptions; Costs; Presence of Officers in the Territory of the Other Party; Implementation of the Agreement; Other International Agreements; Amendment of the Agreement; Enforcement and Termination.
Iran and the Republic of Azerbaijan Sign Accord on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Customs Affairs
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 3 January 2017- Iranian legislators on 3 Dey 1305 (21 December 2016) passed the Law of Agreement Between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Government of the Republic of Azerbaijan for Mutual Administrative Assistance in Customs Affairs, the text of which was published today in the Official Gazette.
According to the preface of this 26-article agreement, “The Islamic Republic of Iran and the Republic of Azerbaijan which are called hereinafter the Parties, with due consideration of the importance of having confidence in accurate evaluation of customs duties and other levies and for being assured of proper execution of the measures relating to prohibition, restrictions and controlling of special goods by their customs; and realizing that violation of customs laws shall damage their security and economic, business, financial, social, cultural interests and public health; and understanding the necessity of international cooperation in the areas of the subjects pertaining to implementation of their customs laws ; and understanding that taking effective actions against customs violations would be possible through close cooperation of their customs in accordance with the mutually agreed regulations; and in compliance with the recommendations of the Customs Cooperation Council” have signed the agreement.
The customs accord between Iran and Azerbaijan contains the following subjects: Definitions; Scope of Applicability; Information for Application and Implementation of Customs Laws; Information for Evaluation of Customs Payments; Information Related to Customs Violations; Prior Exchange of Information; Prompt Assistance; Notifications; Supervision and Information; Controlled Delivery of Goods; Experts and Witnesses; Correspondence Respecting the Requests; Methods of Gaining Information; Presence of Officers in the Territory of the Other Party; Utilization of the Information; Confidentiality and Protecting the Information; Exemptions; Costs; Implementation and Application of the Agreement; Territorial Administration of the Agreement; Additions and Amendments; Other International Obligations; Settlement of Disputes; Enforcement, Duration and Termination.
Economic Cooperation Agreement Included Between Iran and Hungary
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 3 January 2017- The Official Gazette reported today that The Iranian parliament On 25 Aban 1395 (15 November 2016) passed The Law of Agreement on Economic Cooperation between The Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Government of Hungary.
In Article 1 of the 9-article accord it is foreseen that the contracting parties shall cooperate in the following areas:
Development of Infrastructure; Transport and Related infrastructure and Logistics; Automobile Industry; Water Management; Protection of Environment and Natural Resources; Agriculture and Food Industries; Health Industry and Heath Care; Science and Technology; Research and Development; Tourism; Banking, Insurance and Financial and Credit Institutions; Investment and Financing the Economic Projects; SMEs.
Iran and China Sign Treaty on Mutual Legal Assistance in Criminal Matters
Nourlaw.com- Tehran-3 January 2017- Iran and China desiring to improve effective cooperation of the two states in the area of mutual legal assistance in criminal matters on the basis of mutual respect of their sovereignty, equality and mutual interests, have concluded an agreement for materialization of these goals.
According to the Official Gazette today, the Law of Treaty between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the People’s Republic of China was approved by the Iranian parliament on 7 Shahrivar 1395 (28 August 2016).The 24-article accord contains subjects such as: Scope of Applicability; Manner of Communication; Grounds for Rejection or Suspension of Assistance; Form and Content of Requests; Language, Execution of Requests; Confidentiality and Limitation of Utilization; Service of Papers; Procuring of Evidence; Avoidance of Securing Evidence; Presence of Persons for Securing of Evidence or Assistance in Investigations; Transfer of Convicts for Securing of Evidence or Assistance in Investigations; Protection of Witnesses and Experts; Investigation, Searching, Blocking and Seizure of Objects; Returning Documents, Records, Items of Evidence; Assets and Proceeds Accruing from Criminal Activities; Declaration of Results of Measures Adopted in the Area of Criminal Subjects; Presentation of Criminal Records; Exchange of Records and Respecting the Related Laws; Notarial Authentication of Documents; Cost; Other Areas of Cooperation; Settlement of Disputes; Enforcement; Amendment and Termination.
Iran and Japan Agreement on Mutual Promotion and Protection of Investments Finalized
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 3 January 2017- On 3 Azar 1395 (23 November 2016) The Law of Agreement on Mutual Promotion and Protection of Investment between the Islamic Republic of Iran and Japan was passed by the Iranian Parliament, the Official Gazette published the text of the legislation today.
The 21-article accord contains the following titles: Definitions; Promotion of Investment; Admission of Investment; Protection of Investment; General Conduct; Observance of Commitments; Executive Obligations; Confiscation and Compensation of Damages; Substitution; Transfer; Prevention of Entitlement to Benefits; General and Security Exceptions; Intellectual Property Rights; Taxation; Interim Protective Measures; Precautionary Measures; Settlement of Disputes between Investors and the Governments; Investment Joint Task Force; Final Provisions.
Agreement on Avoidance of Double Taxation and Tax Evasion Concluded by Iran and Cyprus
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 3 January 2017- The expressed desire of the governments of Iran and Cyprus to form an agreement for cooperation in tackling tax affairs, was materialized on 24 Aban 1395 (14 November 2016) when the Iranian parliament passed The Law of Agreement Between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Republic of Cyprus for Avoidance of Double Taxation and Prevention of Tax Evasion Respecting Tax Revenue. The law was published in the Official Gazette of today.
The 28-article agreement includes subjects listed below:
Persons Subject to the Agreement; Taxes Subject to the Agreement; General Definitions; Residency; Permanent Domicile; Revenues Accruing from Immovable Assets; Business Revenues; International Transport; Establishments Affiliated to Governments; Dividends; Financial Expenses; Concessions; Investment Proceeds; Independent Personal Services; Non-independent Personal Services; Managers’ Fees; Artists and Athletics Affairs; Retirement Remuneration; Governmental Services; Students, Teachers and Professors; Other Revenues; Procedure of Deletion of Double Taxation; Non-discrimination; Manner of Mutual Agreement; Exchange of Information; Diplomatic and Consular Missions; Enforcement; Termination.
Iran Becomes a Member of AASSA
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 3 January 2017- The law of Membership of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the Association of Academies and Societies of Sciences in Asia (AASSA), approved by the Iranian parliament on 22/8/1395 (12 November 2016) was published today in the Official Gazette.
AASSA, launched on 1 January 2012, as a consequence of the merger of AASA (The Associations of Academies of Sciences in Asia) and FASAS (The Federation of Asian Scientific Academies and Societies), is a non-profit international organization with science and technology interests. It is made up of 34 scientific and technological academies and science societies in Asia and Australasia.
Agreement for Transfer of Convicts Concluded between Iran and the Kyrgyz Republic
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 3 January 2017- On 28 August 2016 the Iranian parliament approved the Law of Agreement on Transfer of Convicts between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kyrgyz Republic. The Official Gazette carried the text of the law in today’s issue.
In the preface of the law it is stated that the two states have signed the accord in light of their mutual desire for consolidation of effective cooperation for the transfer of convicts on the principles of national sovereignty and non-interference in each other’s domestic affairs. The primary sections of the 22-article Agreement are: Definitions; Scope of Applicability, Instances of Prevention of Transfer; Information in Relation to Implementation; Exchange of Information; Transfer Request; Presentation of Documents; Consideration of the Consent for Transfer; Response to the Transfer Request; Date, Place and Manner of Transfer; Transfer Costs; Translation of Documents; Status of Judgment after Transfer; Amnesty, Forgiveness and Mitigation; Reconsideration of Judgment; Passage Across a Third Country; Retroactivity; Channels of Communication; Settlement of Disputes and Amendment of the Agreement and its Duration.
Iran and Hungary Sign Agreement on Avoidance of Double Taxation and Tax Evasion
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 3 January 2017- Iranian legislators approved on 2 Azar 1395 (22 November 2016)The Law of Agreement Between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Republic of Hungary for Avoidance of Double Taxation and Prevention of Tax Evasion respecting Revenue and Capital Tax .
As published in the Official Gazette of today the 29-article agreement includes the following subjects: Persons Subject to the Agreement; Taxes Subject to the Agreement; General Definitions; Residence; Permanent Domicile; Revenues Accruing from Immovable Assets; Business Revenues; International Transport; Establishments Affiliated to Governments; Dividends; Financial Expenses; Concessions; Investment Proceeds; Employment Revenues; Managers’ Fees; Artists and Athletics Affairs; Retirement Remuneration; Governmental Services; Students, Teachers and Professors Affairs; Other Revenues; Equity; Removal of Double Taxation; Non-discrimination; Mutual Agreement Procedure; Exchange of Information; Diplomatic and Consular Missions; Enjoyment of Privileges; Enforcement and Termination.
Iran and Tanzania conclude Agreement on Mutual Promotion and Protection of Investments
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 3 January 2017- Iran and the United Republic of Tanzania has agreed to promote and protect mutual investments in their territories, the Official Gazette reported today.
In the Law of Agreement on Mutual Promotion and Protection of Investment between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania, approved on 24 Aban 1395 (14 November 2016) , the contacting parties have stated that the goals for signing the agreement are to consolidate economic cooperation in the best interests of both states, utilization of the economic resources and potential possibilities in the area of investment and laying the ground and safeguarding the proper conditions for investment of the nationals of the contracting parties in their territories and promoting and protecting their ventures.
The 16-article accord contains the following subjects: Definitions; Promotion and Protection of Investment; Admission of Investment; National Conduct and Most Favored Nation Status Respecting Investment; Confiscation and Compensation of Damages and Losses; Repatriation and Transfer of Capital; Substitution; Sanitary Safety and Environment Measures; Corporate Social Responsibility; Observance of Liabilities; Applicability of the Scope of the Agreement; Settlement of Disputes between Investors and the Governments; Enforcement; Duration and Termination.
Agreement on Mutual Promotion and Protection of Investment Concluded between Iran and Slovak Republic
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 3 January 2017- The Official Gazette today published the law of Agreement on Mutual Promotion and Protection of Investment Concluded between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the government of Slovak Republic, approved by the parliament on 25/8/1395 (15 November 2016).
It is stated in the preface of the Agreement that the goals of signing such accord is facilitation of investment for increase of economic capability and sustainable development of both contracting parties, prevention of and combating corruption such as bribery in international cooperation and investment, encouraging corporate social responsibility, protection of health, safety, environment and safeguarding the domestically and internationally recognized labor rights.
According to Article 1 of the Agreement the term “investment” covers shares and contributions of all types of companies, negotiable instruments, bonds, loans and other kinds of debts in a company, properties including tangible and movable assets, rights emerging from lease, mortgage, lien, rights granted by permits and licenses, intellectual property…
Article 2 of the law expands its scope of applicability to the investments made before or after enforcement of the Agreement, provided such investments have been formed in accordance with the laws of each contracting state.
Article 3 stipulates that the contracting states shall adopt fair approach and render full support and create security respecting the investments of the other party.
The Agreement contains 24 articles and tackles different aspects of mutual investments and economic coopersation. It includes the following sections:
Definitions and Scope of Applicability; Standard of Conduct: National Conduct and Most Favored Nation Conduct; Compensation of Damages; Confiscation; Money Transfer; Prevention of Entitlement to Benefits; Substitution; Labor Rights, Environment and Other Standards; General Exceptions; Important Security Concerns; Propagation of Information and Transparency; Settlement of Disputes Between the Investor and the Government (general provisions, fraud, tax evasion, corruption and bribery); Negotiations; Agreement of Each Party with Arbitration; Reference of Dispute to Arbitration; Appointment of Arbitrators; Applicable Law; Arbitral Awards: Enforcement of Awards; Settlement of Disputes between the Contracting Parties; Final Provisions, Applicability, Duration and Termination
Import of Certain Home Appliances Needs Agency of Foreign Companies
Nourlaw.com-Tehran-1 January 2017- The Director General of the Export and Import Regulations of the Trade Promotion Organization of Iran (TPO) has announced in the circular letter No. 95/210/60470 dated 08/10/1395 that import of 18 types of electric and electronic home appliances needs the authorized agency of the related foreign company. An agency activity certificate should be obtained from the Center for the Affairs of Guilds and Merchants of the Ministry of Industry, Mines and Trade.
The goods for which active agency is required for importation, fall under the tariffs of the harmonized system NOs: 85094000-85164000-84818010-84713040-84716020-84714110-85176920.
The said decree is in compliance with Article 4 of the Law of Protection of the Rights of Consumers which states: ’’all the suppliers whether producers or importers of capital goods including heavy or light vehicles, industrial or agricultural and road construction machinery, home appliances, electrical and electronic products, audio and video equipment and communication devices are bound to have registered agents and authorized repair shops, to supply spare parts and render post sale services”.
Iran and Thailand Conclude Trade Agreement
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 28 December 2016- The Law of Trade Agreement between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kingdom of Thailand was published today in the Official Gazette.
The pact was approved by the Iranian parliament on 2/8/1395 (15 November 2016) in line with Principle 125 of the Constitution Law which states, “The President or his legal representative has the authority to sign treaties, protocols, contracts, and agreements concluded by the Iranian government with other governments, as well as agreements pertaining to international organizations, after obtaining the approval of the Islamic Consultative Assembly (parliament)”.
The Agreement includes 11 articles and it stipulates that the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kingdom of Thailand in light of their mutual desire for consolidation and development of bilateral trade relations, expansion, diversification of commercial transactions and upgrading trade cooperation on the basis of mutual benefit, non-discrimination and safeguarding bilateral interests have agreed to take appropriate measures in accordance with their respective laws and regulations for encouraging and facilitating trade and economic cooperation between the two countries.
The agreement states that import and export of goods and services, the origin of which are the territories of both contracting parties shall be based on the trade contracts concluded between natural and juridical persons under the laws and regulations of each country. The contracting states shall not be held responsible for the liabilities emerging from such contracts. Payment of the price of deals and settlement of accounts would be affected through open market foreign exchange, provided that such manner of settlement would not be in contravention with the laws of either contracting state.
Iran and Thailand have undertaken in the Agreement to encourage their firms and companies to participate in exhibitions, trade shows, delegations, seminars and the like to be held in both states and each party will extend the required facilities necessary to the extent possible.
Cooperation of the chambers of commerce, formation of a joint trade task force for implementing and revising the Agreement and removing any impediments in this regard, transparent and unhindered access of the nationals of each state to the judicial authorities of the other state, prevention of any actions jeopardizing public morals, health of human beings, wildlife and the environment, national heritage, etc. are included in other parts of the Agreement.
As for duration, the Agreement will be valid for three years and extendable for one year periods, unless one party decides to terminate the accord.
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 28 December 2016- The Law of Trade Agreement between the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kingdom of Thailand was published today in the Official Gazette.
The pact was approved by the Iranian parliament on 2/8/1395 (15 November 2016) in line with Principle 125 of the Constitution Law which states, “The President or his legal representative has the authority to sign treaties, protocols, contracts, and agreements concluded by the Iranian government with other governments, as well as agreements pertaining to international organizations, after obtaining the approval of the Islamic Consultative Assembly (parliament)”.
The Agreement includes 11 articles and it stipulates that the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kingdom of Thailand in light of their mutual desire for consolidation and development of bilateral trade relations, expansion, diversification of commercial transactions and upgrading trade cooperation on the basis of mutual benefit, non-discrimination and safeguarding bilateral interests have agreed to take appropriate measures in accordance with their respective laws and regulations for encouraging and facilitating trade and economic cooperation between the two countries.
The agreement states that import and export of goods and services, the origin of which are the territories of both contracting parties shall be based on the trade contracts concluded between natural and juridical persons under the laws and regulations of each country. The contracting states shall not be held responsible for the liabilities emerging from such contracts. Payment of the price of deals and settlement of accounts would be affected through open market foreign exchange, provided that such manner of settlement would not be in contravention with the laws of either contracting state.
Iran and Thailand have undertaken in the Agreement to encourage their firms and companies to participate in exhibitions, trade shows, delegations, seminars and the like to be held in both states and each party will extend the required facilities necessary to the extent possible.
Cooperation of the chambers of commerce, formation of a joint trade task force for implementing and revising the Agreement and removing any impediments in this regard, transparent and unhindered access of the nationals of each state to the judicial authorities of the other state, prevention of any actions jeopardizing public morals, health of human beings, wildlife and the environment, national heritage, etc. are included in other parts of the Agreement.
As for duration, the Agreement will be valid for three years and extendable for one year periods, unless one party decides to terminate the accord.
Iran’s Ministry of Economic Affairs and Finance Appointed as the Executive Body for Dealing with AIIB
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 24 December 2016- As reported by the Official Gazette published today, Iran has appointed the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Finance as the body responsible for conducting relations with the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB).
According to its Decree No. H117498/53644 dated 23/09/1395 (13 December 2016), the Council of Ministers named the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Finance as the executive organ for dealing with the AIIB.
On 24 August 2016, Iran’s parliament approved a Single Article Law allowing Iran to join the AIIB
The said bank is an international financial institution that was proposed by China in 2013, with the goal of supporting the building and development of infrastructures throughout the Asia-Pacific region. AIIB has 57 member states and USD 100b in capital. The legislative measure allows the government of Iran to subscribe 15,808 shares with a value of USD 1.59b and participate in future capital increases of the bank.
Tehran Municipality Exerts Levies on Immigrants
Nourlaw.com- Tehran-10 December 2016- The Islamic Council of the City of Tehran has set new levy rates on immigrants living in the city of Tehran, as published in today’s Official Gazette. The council’s decisions are implemented by the Tehran Municipality.
According to resolution No. 160/2215/12868 dated 30/5/1395 (20 August 2016) the amount of the previous rates have been decreased and now the Teheran municipality is allowed to collect the following sums at the time of issuance or extension of the residence cards and work permits for immigrants:
1- 1,500,000 rials per year for one or two member families;
2- 2,000,000 rials per year for three and four member families;
3- 2,500,000 rials per year for the five member family or more.
Iran Customs Starts Implementation of the Decree on Foreign Currencies Held by Passengers
Nourlaw.com-Tehran-27 November 2016- Following our citing of 12 November 2016 on the decree of the Central Bank of Iran (CBI) titled “New Rules Set for Import and Export of Forex by Passengers and Transit Drivers”, ISNA News Agency reported today that customs offices nationwide are implementing the decree which allows passengers exiting or entering the country to hold USD 10,000 or its equivalent in other currencies without declaration. For more details please refer to the related 12 November item in this newsletter.
Code Faragir is Required by Foreigners Domiciled in Iran–What is It?
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 26 November 2016- Code Faragir (comprehensive code) is an identification number issued for foreigners living in Iran. With respect to taxation matters and establishing companies in Iran, foreign nationals, whether natural or juridical persons, must be in possession of this ID number.
According to Article 1 of the Implementation Regulation of the Law on Combating Money Laundering, it is mandatory that Code Faragir be obtained by foreign nationals working in Iran. The Tax Affairs Organization, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Companies’ Registry are the bodies responsible for issuing the code.
Foreign nationals may apply online for getting this ID number through the website:
http://irsherkat.ssaa.ir/Design/RqstAdmission/PervasiveCodeAllocation.aspx?Id=17
For obtaining the code, the following information is required:
Information Needed for Obtaining Code Faragir of Juridical Foreign Entities
Persian Name:
English Name:
Registration Number:
Registration Date:
Country of Registration:
Ownership Type:
City:
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Information Needed for Obtaining Code Faragir of Foreign Natural Persons
First Name:
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+ An ID photo (Valid format of files is “jpeg” and maximum size of file is 100k)
+ Copy of Passport (Valid format of files is “jpeg” and maximum size of file is 100k)
Application for Import of Certain Goods Should be Registered with Iran National Trading System
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 22 November 2016- The Iran National Trading System (INTS) authority declared that as from today, importers of certain goods should first register preliminary applications with INTS (https://www.ntsw.ir/Default.aspx). The goods falling under the decree of INTS are those specified under the chapters 14,43,46,81,88,89,92 and 97 of the Export & Import Regulations Book. They are:
Chapter 14: Vegetable plaiting materials; vegetable products not elsewhere specified or included
Chapter 43: Fur skins and artificial fur; manufactures thereof
Chapter 46: Manufactures of straw, of esparto or of other plaiting materials; basketware and wickerwork
Chapter 81: Other base metals; cermets; articles thereof
Chapter 88: Aircraft, spacecraft, and parts thereof
Chapter 89: Ships, boats and floating structures
Chapter 92: Musical instruments; parts and accessories of such articles
Chapter 97: Works of art, collectors’ pieces and antique
In the decree it is stated that the applicants whose pro forma invoices also include goods under other chapters, should refer to sabtaresh.tpo.ir as before. The site is managed by a department which is part of the state-run Trade Promotion Organization of Iran and is charged with receiving and approving the applications for the import of goods.
INTS is a trade window which acts as an interface between Customs Single Window, Transport Single Window, Permits Single Window and Foreign Exchange Single Window. It functions for consolidation of cooperation between different government agencies and facilitating foreign trade through an integrated online system. INTS is connected to the Ministry of Industry, Mine & Trade and was formed in compliance with legislation such as the Electronic Trade Law, the Law of Sustainable Improvement of Business Environment, the Law of Combating Smuggling of Goods and Foreign Exchange, as well as a number of related governmental decrees.
Foreign Investors May Receive Financial Facilities from Iran’s Development Fund
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 16 November 2016- According to the Official Gazette published today, financial facilities may be granted to foreign investors by the Iranian government. The gazette identified different provisions of the National Development Fund of Iran related to various areas of the economy.
The state-run fund was established in line with Article 84 of the Fifth Development Plan of the Islamic Republic of Iran. It is designed to turn a portion of the revenue originated from selling oil, gas, gas condensates and oil products into durable wealth and productive economic investments. It also insures preservation of the financial interests of future generations from oil and gas resources and products .
According to Resolution 6 of the aforesaid decisions of the Fund’s Board of Trustees, the management of the Fund is allowed: to embark on direct investment (by the Fund itself) or indirect investment (by outsourcing) through assets management companies, to enter into partnership agreements with foreign financial establishments for financing private sector projects, cooperatives and non-governmental public entities and to engage in joint investment with sovereign wealth funds of other countries for investing in joint plans and projects.
The Note of Resolution 6 stipulates that when granting financial facilities to foreign investors is necessary, Part 5 of Section T of Article 84 must be observed. According to which, “Extending facilities to foreign investors should be undertaken with due consideration of competitive conditions, an equitable economic return and with observance of Principle 80 of the Constitution Law”. The said principle states that taking and giving of loans or grants-in-aid, domestic and foreign, by the government, must be approved by the Islamic Consultative Assembly (parliament).
New Rules Set for import and export of Forex by Passengers  and Transit Drivers
Nourlaw.com-Tehran-12 November 2016- In a recent circular letter the Central Bank of the Islamic Republic of Iran (CBI) has set out conditions for the export and import of foreign currencies by passengers and drivers transporting transit goods.

According to the CBI decree, titled” The Executive Instruction for the Rules Applying to the Foreign Currencies Held by Passengers”, effective as from 1/9/1395 (21 November 2016), import of USD up to a ceiling of 10,000 or its equivalent in other foreign currencies, is allowed without declaration to the customs entry points. Any larger sum requires an inquiry from the Center for Financial Intelligence and Combating Money Laundering of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Finance (FIU).

Any passenger in possession of more than USD 10,000 must declare the additional amount and deposit the same with the related Branch of Bank Melli stationed at all customs entry points against receipt of a tracking code. Upon confirmation of the FIU, the additional amount will be returned to the passenger or at the discretion of the passenger, will be transferred to the bank account he/she determines or seeks the Rial equivalent of the said amount.

Passengers who have already declared amounts exceeding USD 10,000 before the effective date of the CBI decree (21 November 2016), should refer within six months to the Customs Information Base www.irica.gov.ir to register their respective information and receive their tracking code.

The above rules also apply to duly licensed drivers transporting commercial goods through Iran. The FIU branches are centralized units of the national agencies responsible for detecting and fighting the financing of terrorism and money laundering.

Iran Signs Agreement on Veterinary and Husbandry Health with  Republic of Azerbaijan
Nourlaw.com-Tehran-12 November 2016- The Official Gazette published today “The Law of Cooperation Agreement in the Field of Veterinary and Livestock Health between The Islamic Republic of Iran and Republic of Azarbaijan States”. The legislation was passed by the Iranian Parliament on 4/7/1395 (25 September 2016).

According to Article 1 of the agreement, its scope of action includes bilateral cooperation for guaranteeing preventive controls, elimination and upgrading the supervision and vigilance respecting the spread of disease in land-based and aquatic animals and facilitation of trade in goods related to the aforesaid animals.

4% On Account Tax for imported Goods
Nourlaw.com-Tehran-31 October 2016- The Center of Imports and Free Zones and Special Economic Zones Affairs of Iran Customs declared today in its circular letter No. 145072/95/101512/73/269 dated 10/08/1395 (31 October 2016) that, as already announced, the import of goods is still subjected to a 4% tax account.
Exemptions for certain importers and goods were detailed in another circular letter of Iran Customs, issued under No. 101512/95/94123/183094/144/191 on 02/06/1395 (23 August 2016). They are: Production and manufacturing entities; holders of Golden Commercial Cards (needed for importation); reputable importers listed by the Tax Affairs Organization, ministries and governmental establishments and organizations and municipalities; goods imported by mail and travelers considered as non-commercial and all the goods listed under Article 119 of the Customs Affairs Law. The article is related to exemption of customs duties for imported goods of diplomatic missions, personal items, transit, military items etc.
Decree on Visa Procedures for Foreign Nationals in Free Zones
Nourlaw.com-Tehran-10 October 2016- The Iran Official Gazette in its issue No. 20854 dated 19/7/1395 (10 October 2016) published Decree No. H52602T/161205 dated 8/12/1394 (2 March 2016) passed by the Iranian Council of Ministers respecting the issue of entry visas for foreign nationals in the free trade and industrial zones. Excerpts follow:

– In this Decree the Host of foreign nationals means governmental or private holders of economic corporations and development, construction, production, industrial, service, medical, recreational and touristic projects, as well as other natural and juridical persons.

Public Places refers to hotels, motels, hostels, dormitories and private places including guest houses of private companies and homes of the individuals who are authorized for hosting the travelers.

– The police stationed at the entry points of the free zones shall issue and stamp the residence permit on the valid travel documents of foreign nationals. The validity duration of the permit is one month. However, upon the request of the Host and approval of the free zone authority, it can be extended for six months. It is also renewable for an additional six month period. For the residence of foreign nationals investing in the free zones, a residence permit of one to five years can be issued at the discretion of the related free zone authority.

– For the following persons, a residence permit shall not be issued:

A) Citizens of the countries whose entry has been banned by the government of Iran.

B) Those who are not allowed to enter the country on the order of judicial and security authorities.

C) Those who are not allowed to enter the free zones on the order of judicial and security authorities.

– Foreign nationals, in addition to the entry points of the  free zones, can use

other entry points for accessing and leaving the free zones. For that, the Iranian consulates in foreign countries or domestic representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, or the representatives of police at the designated points (with prior permission of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs) will issue a visa valid for one month. Extension of the residence of such foreign nationals is possible in line with the manner described above. Upon the request  of the foreign national and at the discretion of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,  issuance of a visa and residence permit on separate forms is allowed. In order for them to exit through the mainland, the representative office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the free zone shall issue the related visa for entering mainland Iran.

– Foreign nationals who have entered the free zones and wish to travel to the mainland, should obtain an entry visa from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ representative office in the free zone. The visa would be issued within 48 hours.

– Foreign nationals residing in the mainland and having a valid visa, will not need a separate visa for entering the free zones. They may travel to the free zones by presenting their residence permit and a valid visa.

– Foreign nationals working on Iranian oil and gas installations located outside the authorized water limit of the free zones (800 meters) should obtain their valid visa from the Iranian consulates abroad or the representative offices of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the free zones or provincial capitals.

– Managers of public and private places are obliged to inform the alien affairs section of the police of the free zone, concerning the particulars of the identity and the date of entry of foreign nationals to the zones.

– Employment of foreign nationals shall be subject to the free zones’ regulations pertaining to labor, social security and insurance.

Import of Some Second hand Goods Disallowed
Nourlaw.com-Tehran- 8 October 2016- The Trade Promotion Organization of Iran (TPO) in its circular letter  No. 95/210/44253 dated 17/07/1395 (8 October 2016) has disallowed applying for the import of second hand goods which are subject to standard regulations. TPO‘s decree is based on the resolution of the Committee which according to Article 1 of the by-law of the Export and Import Regulations Act, has been charged with supervision and drafting suggestions regarding export and import of goods and services. TPO notes in its circular that according to the declaration of the National Standard Organization of Iran (a.k.a ISIRI), a thorough examination of the standard qualifications of the group of imported second-hand goods which are subject to a set of compulsory criteria, is impossible of achievement.
Iran Welcomes Amendments of International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS)
Nourlaw.com- Tehran-6 October 2016- The Iranian Official Gazette in today’s issue  published the full text of the Law of Approval of Amendments to the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), passed by the Iranian parliament on 31 August 2016.The Islamic Republic of Iran acceded to the convention on 17 May 1994.

The SOLAS Convention in its successive forms is generally regarded as the most important of all international treaties concerning the safety of merchant ships. The convention has been updated and amended on numerous occasions. The convention in force today is sometimes referred to as SOLAS, 1974.

Tax Criminalization in Iran
Nourlaw.com-Tehran-5 October 2016- The website of the Tax Affairs Organization published a short Farsi language article on tax criminalization in Iran today. Our English translation of excerpts of that item is as follows:

Prevention of non-abidance of the law is a subject of great significance in all countries and Iran is no exception to this rule. One of the essential matters in the realm of tax law, are tax violations such as tax evasion that carry particular weight and efforts to combat this phenomenon are unstinting, as far as is possible, by passing preventive legislation.

In the Direct Taxation Act of Iran, tax violations such as tax evasion were dealt with in a non-criminal manner in the past and cash fines were imposed to prevent such actions. But, with the passing of the Amendment of the Direct Taxation Act in August of 2015, the perpetrators of tax offenses shall be sentenced, in addition to cash fines, to penal punishment set out in Articles 274 to 279 of the act.

According to Article 274 of the act, tax violations such as concealing economic activities and hiding accrued revenue, presenting falsified statutory books, statements and documents as evidence of ongoing business and using the Commercial Card of other persons for tax evasion, are now considered a crime. The perpetrators (as stipulated in Article 275) shall be subject to Grade Six Punishment (i.e., imprisonment ranging from six months to two years, deprivation of social civil rights for a period of six months to five years etc.).

In cases wherein tax violations are committed by a juridical entity, the company may be prohibited from transacting certain businesses or issuance of certain commercial instruments. In addition to the said punishment, the perpetrators of tax offenses shall be held liable for payment of the principal tax plus the applicable cash penalties, including the damages inflicted upon the government in accordance with the courts’ ruling.

In the amendment of the tax act, the violations which might be committed by tax offices have also been the focus of attention and according to Article 279, any unauthorized access to and misuse of the information registered in the tax data base relating to the identity, performance and assets of the tax payers for purposes other than assessing and collection of taxes and also disclosure of the information of tax payers is considered a crime. The perpetrator of such crime, in addition to being deprived of governmental and public services for two to five years, shall be sentenced to imprisonment ranging from six months to two years.

Entry from Iran to the Republic of Azerbaijan by cars lacking Euro 4 standards or manufactured before 2010 banned
Nourlaw.com- Tehran- 27 September 2016- Iran Customs in its circular letter No.122470/237 has notified that according to the information received from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Iranian Embassy in Baku, the government of the Republic of Azerbaijan has banned the entry of vehicles lacking Euro 4 standards  (European toxic emissions limit of vehicles) or those manufactured before 2010. In the circular it is noted that the ban should be duly considered in issuing permits for temporary exit of vehicles to the Republic of Azabaijan or exporting cars from Iran to that country.