Annual Report on Exchange Arrangements and Exchange Restrictions 2005
Chapter

BELGIUM

Author(s):
International Monetary Fund. Monetary and Capital Markets Department
Published Date:
September 2005
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(Position as of December 31, 2004)

Status Under IMF Articles of Agreement
Article VIIIDate of acceptance: February 15, 1961.
Exchange Arrangement
CurrencyThe currency of Belgium is the euro.
Exchange rate structureUnitary.
Classification
Exchange arrangement with no separate legal tenderBelgium participates in the EMU with 11 other members of the EU: Austria, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain. The ECB may intervene to smooth out fluctuations in the euro exchange rate.
Exchange taxNo.
Exchange subsidyNo.
Forward exchange marketBanks are allowed to engage in spot and forward exchange transactions in any currency, and they may deal among themselves and with residents and nonresidents in foreign notes and coins.
Arrangements for Payments and Receipts
Prescription of currency requirementsNo.
Payments arrangementsNo.
Administration of controlNo.
International security restrictionsIn accordance with EU regulations and the relevant UN Security Council resolutions, certain restrictions are maintained on the making of payments and transfers for current international transactions with respect to certain individuals linked to the former government of Iraq, Myanmar, certain individuals associated with the previous government of the former Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Liberia, Zimbabwe, and certain persons indicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Financing of and financial assistance related to military activities in Somalia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, and Sudan are prohibited. Restrictions also apply to transfers with respect to the Taliban and terrorist organizations and individuals associated therewith.
In accordance with IMF Executive Board Decision No. 144-(52/51)Yes.
In accordance with UN sanctionsYes.
Payments arrearsNo.
Controls on trade in gold (coins and/or bullion)No.
Controls on exports and imports of banknotesNo.
Resident Accounts
Foreign exchange accounts permittedYes.
Held domesticallyYes.
Held abroadYes.
Accounts in domestic currency held abroadYes.
Accounts in domestic currency convertible into foreign currencyYes.
Nonresident Accounts
Foreign exchange accounts permittedYes.
Domestic currency accountsYes.
Convertible into foreign currencyYes.
Blocked accountsThese accounts are affected by international security restrictions. The accounts held in the names of several former Yugoslav officials and public entities are still blocked, as are accounts of the Taliban, some residents of Myanmar, terrorist organizations and individuals associated therewith, certain officials of Liberia and Zimbabwe, and certain persons indicted by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
Imports and Import Payments
Foreign exchange budgetNo.
Financing requirements for importsNo.
Documentation requirements for release of foreign exchange for importsNo.
Import licenses and other nontariff measures
Negative listIndividual licenses are required for certain specified imports from some non-EU countries, including many textile and steel products, diamonds, and weapons. All other products are free from license requirements.
Licenses with quotasAlong with other EU countries, the Belgium-Luxembourg Economic Union applies quotas on a number of textile products from non-EU countries and on a number of steel products from Kazakhstan, Russia, and Ukraine.
Import taxes and/or tariffsBelgium applies the Common Import Regime of the EU to imports of most agricultural and livestock products from non-EU countries.
State import monopolyNo.
Exports and Export Proceeds
Repatriation requirementsNo.
Financing requirementsNo.
Documentation requirementsNo.
Export licensesExport licenses are required for only a few products (mostly of a strategic character), for weapons, and for diamonds.
Without quotasYes.
Export taxesNo.
Payments for Invisible Transactions and Current Transfers
Controls on these transfersNo.
Proceeds from Invisible Transactions and Current Transfers
Repatriation requirementsNo.
Restrictions on use of fundsNo.
Capital Transactions
Controls on capital transactionsYes.
Controls on capital and money market instrumentsNo.
Controls on derivatives and other instrumentsNo.
Controls on credit operationsNo.
Controls on direct investment
Inward direct investmentNo authorization is required for inward direct investment in Belgium, except for the acquisition of Belgian flag vessels by shipping companies that do not have their principal office in Belgium.
Controls on liquidation of direct investmentNo.
Controls on real estate transactionsNo.
Controls on personal capital transactionsNo.
Provisions specific to commercial banks and other credit institutionsNo.
Provisions specific to institutional investors
Currency-matching regulations on assets/liabilities compositionThese regulations are maintained, but the introduction of the euro has considerably reduced their significance. The EU allows its member countries to maintain such regulations.
Other controls imposed by securities lawsNo.
Changes During 2004
No significant changes occurred in the exchange and trade system.

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