Banking Law in France

Banking Law in France

Updated on Monday 18th July 2016

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Banking-Law-in-FranceThe main legislation governing banking activities in France is the Banking Act which was enabled in 1984. The French Banking Law provides for the main regulations under which banking and other credit institutions can be licenses and operate in this country. The law also established the professional qualifications of those working in the banking system and the types of institutions one can open in France. Apart from the Banking Act, the following laws apply:

  • -          the Financial Activities Modernization Act of 1996;
  • -          the Act of 1999 on financial security and savings;
  • -          the Act of 2003 on financial security.

France also merged EU Directives on banking in its national Banking Law which was last amended in 2013. Our lawyers in France can offer more information on the laws above.

Types of credit institutions in France

According to the French Banking Act, both local and foreign investors can set up several types of financial institutions here, provided that they meet the professional and capital requirements. The Banking Law provides for the following types of banks in France:

  • -          general credit institutions which can carry out any type of banking activity;
  • -          specialized financial institutions which are limited from certain activities;
  • -          investment services providers.

The following activities can be carried out by banks in France:

  • -          receive funds from the public;
  • -          offer credits;
  • -          carry out foreign exchange activities;
  • -          provide advisory services.

All financial institutions in France must be licensed by the Credit Institutions and Investment Enterprises Committee and the Banking Commission.

The 2013 French Banking Law

In 2013, the Government enabled the new Regulation Banking Act. The main changes brought to the Banking Law refer to the separation of trading activities banks can carry out and their main activities. Also, under the amended Banking Law, regulatory and supervisory authorities have enhanced powers. Another important change refers to the restructuring of financial institutions facing difficulties.

For complete information about all the amendments brought to the Banking Law, you can refer to our law firm in France. You can also contact us for assistance in opening corporate bank accounts in France.