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Banking Law in Belgium

Banking Law in Belgium

Updated on Friday 11th September 2015

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Belgian laws for the banking sector

Belgium is one of the most developed countries in the world when it comes to the banking system, since it has the largest number of bank branches in the world. Therefore, the Belgian electronic banking is spread all over the country, and transactions can be made with a computer or ATM. In addition, some banks operate entirely online and clients can run all operations, such as opening an account or use the investment services provided by the bank, exclusively in this manner.
In terms of charges, each bank has its own system, but all of them tax clients for most products and services. In comparison to UK or USA, Belgium has higher taxes for personal accounts, as each service is taxed separately, such as debit or credit cards or Internet Banking, separate from the charges applied for each transaction. 

New rules in the Belgian banking sector

In 2013, the chief ministers of the Belgian government decided to introduce new rules in the banking sector in order to avoid repetition of the economic crisis that struck the Belgian companies in 2008. The reform has two main objectives, to limit risk behaviors bankers and to strengthen the warranties for investors. Our lawyers in Belgium can provide accurate information regarding the new banking law in Belgium. Contact us for any additional questions regarding the financial sector in Belgium.
Establishments that receive financial assistance from the state will no longer receive variable compensation, and risk takers will receive bonuses, but they will be limited.
The new banking law in Belgium dated February 2014 contains new rules on supervision, resolution and structure of banking.  As the financial crisis has exposed structural underfunding to an acute liquidity of some banks, the European Union Directive 36/2013 aims to address these finding with different measures, such as strengthening the bank’s capital in regards to quantity and quality, and requests greater liquidity to manage the risk on short and long terms.

EU Directives implemented in the Belgian banking system

Besides the transposition of the EU Directive, the new banking law in Belgium refers to early reforms for the international level when it comes to separation of certain trading assets, as well as governance, to strengthen the control of the credit institutions at different levels. An important lesson given by the economic crisis is that it is crucial to have sufficient critical analysis.
The new banking law project in Belgium includes measures such as the presence of an independent director in each of the following areas: audit, risk, remuneration and nomination committee. It was implemented within the legal governing body and it provides the compulsory establishment of a steering committee and anchoring in law. Also it must be expanded to all credit institutions. Our attorneys in Belgium  will be happy to provide our clients with more in-depth information on this topic.


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