Basics by Free Trade Agreement: Bahrain
How Does The FTA Affect Service Sectors?
Under the U.S.-Bahrain FTA, U.S. service providers receive substantial market access across Bahrain's entire services regime and receive the same treatment as that provided to Bahraini companies in almost all areas. The very few exceptions are specifically provided for under the FTA through the use of the so-called "negative list" approach. Under the FTA, the Government of Bahrain is required to lift existing restrictions for U.S. service suppliers on the following service sectors: accounting, architecture, engineering, advertising, construction, tourist services, consultancy and management, and publishing. Additionally, Bahrain will remove market access barriers for U.S. telecommunications suppliers. U.S.-based financial services providers were granted full rights to establish subsidiaries, joint ventures, or branches for banks and insurance companies. U.S. insurance providers are able to supply insurance on a cross-border basis, including reinsurance; reinsurance brokerage; marine, aviation, and transport insurance; and other insurance services. Along with opening markets to U.S. service provides, under this FTA there is to be more regulatory transparency, including commitments regarding the maintenance of open and transparent administrative procedures, consultations with interested parties before issuing regulations, and the provision of advance notice and comment periods for proposed rules and regulations.
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