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Freedom of Information
Freedom of Information Act
South Wales Freedom of Information Act
to the US Freedom of Information Act
Council Directive on Freedom of
Freedom of Information and Protection of
Britain needs a Freedom of Information
Principle of Access to
Minimum Elements of the
- Information is accessible, unless it falls within one
of the grounds for refusal.
- No showing of interest is required.
- Information should be provided in the form
- Responses to requests should be made within 1
- Denials of requests for information shall be in
writing, state the grounds for refusal, and be made
generally within 1 to 2 months.
- Grounds for refusal are to be narrowly construed,
balancing the interest to be protected against the public
- Public authorities should redact confidential
portions out of documents and disclose non-confidential
portions, where this can be done without prejudicing the
- Actual copies of documents will be provided when
- Reasonable charges may be made for supplying
information, subject to an established schedule.
- Public authorities must collect and disseminate
- The public must be informed of their opportunities to
participate in decision-making processes.
Grounds for Refusal of a Request for
- The public authority does not have the
- The request is manifestly unreasonable or overly
- The request concerns materials being completed.
- Disclosure would adversely affect:
- Confidentiality of the proceedings of public
- Internal relations, national defense, public
- Confidentiality of commercial or industrial
- Intellectual property rights,
- Confidentiality of personal data,
- The interests of a third party that has supplied the
information, without that party being legally obliged to
Source: Claudia Saladin & Brennan Van Dyke,
'Implementing the Principles of the Public Participation
Convention in International Organizations', Background
Document for NGO Session, June 1998, available URL: