Enterprises are also entitled to a basic banking service. In this article, you can read all about it.
For various reasons, some enterprises may face difficulties in opening a current account. Therefore, the basic banking service for enterprises and diplomatic missions was introduced.
Banks are required to offer a guaranteed minimum service for enterprises so that enterprises and the self-employed can still obtain a current account with a limited range of services (including a debit card) enabling them to carry out financial transactions and participate in economic life.
With that basic banking service, you can do the following on behalf of your company with the current account:
The current account is offered in euros by default, but you can also request a current account in US dollars (note: your company or diplomatic mission will then not be able to deposit or withdraw money).
You can only do the above-mentioned transactions if there is enough money in this current account.
Every business that is established in Belgium and registered in the Belgian Crossroads Bank for Enterprises or that has requested a registration, is entitled to the basic banking service.
The enterprise or diplomatic mission must have been denied minimal service by at least three different banks to be able to claim the basic banking service.
Diplomatic missions as referred to in Article 3 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 18 April 1961 are also entitled to a basic banking service.
The Chamber of Basic Banking Services can only require "systemically important" banks to offer a basic banking service to an enterprise or diplomatic mission:
A credit institution is appointed as a basic banking service provider through a procedure at the Chamber of Basic Banking Services of the FPS Economy.
If your company was refused 3 times (by three different Belgian banks) when requesting to open a bank account, you can submit an application to the Chamber of Basic Banking Services of the FPS Economy.
These include, in particular, the following documents: a complete application form with information on the enterprise, three substantiated refusals from Belgian banks, a declaration on honour that the enterprise or diplomatic mission does not already have a basic banking service or payment account and, if necessary, proof of cancellation of existing accounts.
 Specific additional risk mitigation measures apply to all categories of companies referred to in Article 5, §1, of the Law of 18 September 2017 on the prevention of money laundering and the financing of terrorism and restricting the use of cash, which were assigned a basic banking service provider by the Chamber of Basic Banking Services: conditions of reliability, extract from the criminal record, list of usual counterparties that allows the origin and destination of funds to be accurately determined.
Specific additional risk mitigation measures also apply to diamond dealers.
The credit institutions appointed by the Chamber of Basic Banking Services set their own price for the basic banking service. It may depend on the risk involved in providing an account to the enteprise. The number of electronic transactions is unlimited.
Upon receipt of the designation by the Chamber of Basic Banking Services, the bank may refuse to provide this service in certain cases.
Your enterprise already has a basic banking service or another current account with your bank or another bank.
Your application for the basic banking service is a violation of the law of 18 September 2017 on the prevention of money laundering and terrorist financing and on the restriction of the use of cash or you have provided incorrect information in this regard.
A member of your business's statutory governing body or the person in charge of its active management or a member of the executive committee has been convicted of fraud, abuse of trust, fraudulent bankruptcy or forgery.
If your enterprise is one of the companies for which specific risk mitigation measures exist and you do not comply with them or do not provide the necessary information about them .
If you request transactions in US dollars and your company does not comply with certain conditions or does not provide the necessary information about them .
If your company or diplomatic mission fails to comply with restrictions necessary to limit risks associated with the use of cash .
Even after the basic banking service was opened, the bank can terminate the provision of the basic banking service in the following situations: