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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

CFR - Code of Federal Regulations Title 21

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Help | More About 21CFR
[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 21, Volume 1]
[Revised as of April 1, 2014]
[CITE: 21CFR20.89]



TITLE 21--FOOD AND DRUGS
CHAPTER I--FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
SUBCHAPTER A--GENERAL

PART 20 -- PUBLIC INFORMATION

Subpart E--Limitations on Exemptions

Sec. 20.89 Communications with foreign government officials.

Communications with foreign government officials shall have the same status as communications with any member of the public, except that:

(a) Investigatory records compiled for law enforcement purposes by foreign government officials who perform counterpart functions to the Food and Drug Administration in a foreign country, and trade secrets and confidential commercial or financial information obtained by such officials, which are voluntarily disclosed to the Food and Drug Administration as part of cooperative law enforcement and regulatory efforts, shall be exempt from public disclosure to the same extent to which the records would be so exempt pursuant to 20.61 and 20.64, as if they had been prepared by or submitted directly to Food and Drug Administration employees, except that investigatory records shall be exempt from disclosure for a longer period of time if the foreign government officials so require as a condition of their furnishing the information to the Food and Drug Administration.

(b) Disclosure of investigatory records compiled for law enforcement purposes by the Food and Drug Administration to foreign government officials who perform counterpart functions to the Food and Drug Administration in a foreign country as part of cooperative law enforcement efforts does not invoke the rule established in 20.21 that such records shall be made available for disclosure to all members of the public.

(c)(1) The Commissioner of Food and Drugs, or any other officer or employee of the Food and Drug Administration whom the Commissioner may designate to act on his or her behalf for the purpose, may authorize the disclosure of confidential commercial information submitted to the Food and Drug Administration, or incorporated into agency-prepared records, to foreign government officials who perform counterpart functions to the Food and Drug Administration as part of cooperative law enforcement or regulatory efforts, provided that:

(i) The foreign government agency has provided both a written statement establishing its authority to protect confidential commercial information from public disclosure and a written commitment not to disclose any such information provided without the written permission of the sponsor or written confirmation by the Food and Drug Administration that the information no longer has confidential status; and

(ii) The Commissioner of Food and Drugs or the Commissioner's designee makes one or more of the following determinations:

(A) The sponsor of the product application has provided written authorization for the disclosure;

(B) Disclosure would be in the interest of public health by reason of the foreign government's possessing information concerning the safety, efficacy, or quality of a product or information concerning an investigation; or

(C) The disclosure is to a foreign scientist visiting the Food and Drug Administration on the agency's premises as part of a joint review or long-term cooperative training effort authorized under section 708 of the act, the review is in the interest of public health, the Food and Drug Administration retains physical control over the information, the Food and Drug Administration requires the visiting foreign scientist to sign a written commitment to protect the confidentiality of the information, and the scientist provides a written assurance that he or she has no financial interest in the regulated industry of the type that would preclude participation in the review of the matter if the individual were subject to the conflict of interest rules applicable to the Food and Drug Administration advisory committee members under 14.80(b)(1) of this chapter. Subject to all of the foregoing conditions, visiting foreign scientists may have access to trade secret information, entitled to protection under section 301(j) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the act), in those cases where such disclosures would be a necessary part of the joint review or training.

(2) Except as provided under paragraph (c)(1)(ii)(C) of this section, this provision does not authorize the disclosure to foreign government officials of other countries of trade secret information concerning manufacturing methods and processes prohibited from disclosure by section 301(j) of the act, unless pursuant to an express written authorization provided by the submitter of the information.

(3) Any disclosure under this section of information submitted to the Food and Drug Administration or incorporated into agency-prepared records does not invoke the rule established in 20.21 that such records shall be made available to all members of the public.

(d)(1) The Senior Associate Commissioner for Policy, Planning, and Legislation, or the Deputy Commissioner for International and Constituent Relations, or any other officer or employee of the Food and Drug Administration whom the Senior Associate Commissioner for Policy, Planning, and Legislation or the Deputy Commissioner for International and Constituent Relations may designate to act on their behalf for the purpose, may authorize the disclosure to, or receipt from, an official of a foreign government agency of nonpublic, predecisional documents concerning the Food and Drug Administration's or the other government agency's regulations or other regulatory requirements, or other nonpublic information relevant to either agency's activities, as part of cooperative efforts to facilitate global harmonization of regulatory requirements, cooperative regulatory activities, or implementation of international agreements, provided that:

(i) The foreign government agency has the authority to protect such nonpublic documents from public disclosure and will not disclose any such documents provided without the written confirmation by the Food and Drug Administration that the documents no longer have nonpublic status; and

(ii) The Senior Associate Commissioner for Policy, Planning, and Legislation or the Deputy Commissioner for International and Constituent Relations or their designee makes the determination that the exchange is reasonably necessary to facilitate global harmonization of regulatory requirements, cooperative regulatory activities, or implementation of international agreements.

(2) Any exchange under this section of nonpublic documents does not invoke the rule established in 20.21 that such records shall be made available to all members of the public.

(e) For purposes of this section, the term "official of a foreign government agency" includes, but is not limited to, employees (whether temporary or permanent) of and agents contracted by the foreign government, or by an international organization established by law, treaty, or other governmental action and having responsibility to facilitate global or regional harmonization of standards and requirements in FDA's areas of responsibility or to promote and coordinate public health efforts. For such officials, the statement and commitment required by paragraph (c)(1)(i) of this section shall be provided on behalf of both the organization and the individual.

[42 FR 15616, Mar. 22, 1977, as amended at 58 FR 61603, Nov. 19, 1993; 60 FR 63382, Dec. 8, 1995; 65 FR 11888, Mar. 7, 2000]

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