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Since the start of the war in Ukraine in February 2022, 23,309 bank accounts in Belgian banks have been opened by Ukrainian refugees.
Many Ukrainian citizens have had to leave their country and have arrived in Belgium as refugees. Access to a bank account is therefore crucial to be able to function in Belgian society.
Since the beginning of the conflict, Belgian banks have provided basic banking services to Ukrainian refugees. This basic banking service allows you to open a current account with a debit card and use it to carry out basic transactions. The refugees also have the option of opening a regular bank account.
With a bank account, a refugee can receive wages or social benefits, withdraw money at the ATM, make payments in shops, buy train and metro tickets… etc. This makes it easier to participate in society.
In total, 23,309 bank accounts have been opened in Belgium by Ukrainian refugees since the outbreak of the war in Ukraine. By way of comparison, in May the number of bank accounts opened by Ukrainian refugees stood at 11,292. Since then we have seen a doubling. More specifically, 12,888 basic bank accounts were opened, representing 57% percent of the total number of bank accounts opened by Ukrainian refugees. The other accounts opened by Ukrainian citizens are regular accounts.
Jongerenrekeningen, pakketten, gewone zichtrekeningen,…
Since June 1, 2022, Ukrainian refugees also have the option of depositing their Hryvnias in their account at Belgian banks, and thus have them exchanged for euros. With this scheme, the Belgian banking sector aims to support Ukrainian refugees during their stay in Belgium.
De Oekraïense grivna, ook wel grivnya of hryvnia (Oekraïens: гривня, hryvnia [ˈɦrɪu̯ɲɑ]; Russisch: гривна, grivna [ˈɡrʲivnə]) is de munteenheid van Oekraïne.
Since then, 475 transactions have been carried out at the banks' counters, totaling 3,730,900 Hryvnia or EUR 111,931. This amounts to an average amount per transaction of 7,855 Hryvnia or 236 EUR. A maximum of 10,000 Hryvnia can be exchanged per account.
Omruilingen aan de loketten van de NBB zijn hier niet bij inbegrepen.
To help refugees gain a better understanding of their banking affairs in Belgium, Febelfin has collected all concrete and practical information about the basic banking service in a folder. It is available in Ukrainian, Russian, French, English, Dutch and German.
The brochure focuses on a number of frequently asked questions, such as: what is the basic banking service, who can use it and what documents are required to apply for the basic banking service. This brochure can be obtained from, among others, Fedasil and on the information website of the government.
Other relevant documents produced in the context of the war in Ukraine are also available in several languages.