Article 25: Economic Integration Agreements

The European Communities and their Member States recall that, in accordance with article 58 of the Treaty establishing the European Community:

a) companies or firms formed in accordance with the law of a Member State and having their registered office, central administration or principal place of business within the Community shall, for the right of establishment pursuant to Part Three, Title III, Chapter 2 of the Treaty establishing the European Community, be treated in the same way as natural persons who are nationals of Member States; companies or firms which only have their registered office within the Community must, for this purpose, have an effective and continuous link with the economy of one of the Member States;

(b) “companies and firms” means companies or firms constituted under civil or commercial law, including cooperative societies, and other legal persons governed by public or private law, save for those which are non-profitmaking. The European Communities and their Member States further recall that: Community law provides for the possibility to extend the treatment described above to branches and agencies of companies or firms not established in one of the Member States; and that, the application of Article 25 of the Energy Charter Treaty will allow only those derogations necessary to safeguard the preferential treatment resulting from the wider process of economic integration resulting from the Treaties establishing the European Communities.

An Investment of an Investor referred to in Article 1(7)(a)(ii), of a Contracting Party which is not party to an EIA or a member of a free-trade area or a customs union, shall be entitled to treatment accorded under such EIA, free-trade area or customs union, provided that the Investment:

(a) has its registered office, central administration or principal place of business in the Area of a party to that EIA or member of that free-trade area or customs union; or

(b) in case it only has its registered office in that Area, has an effective and continuous link with the economy of one of the parties to that EIA or member of that free-trade area or customs union.

(1)  The provisions of this Treaty shall not be so construed as to oblige a Contracting Party which is party to an Economic Integration Agreement (hereinafter referred to as “EIA”) to extend, by means of most favoured nation treatment, to another Contracting Party which is not a party to that EIA, any preferential treatment applicable between the parties to that EIA as a result of their being parties thereto.

(2) For the purposes of paragraph (1), “EIA” means an agreement substantially liberalising, inter alia, trade and investment, by providing for the absence or elimination of substantially all discrimination between or among parties thereto through the elimination of existing discriminatory measures and/or the prohibition of new or more discriminatory measures, either at the entry into force of that agreement or on the basis of a reasonable time frame.

(3) This Article shall not affect the application of the WTO Agreement according to Article 29.