Belgium—cross border banking and finance guide
Produced in partnership with NautaDutilh

The following Banking & Finance practice note produced in partnership with NautaDutilh provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Belgium—cross border banking and finance guide
  • Loan market and developments
  • Please provide a brief overview of the current state of the loan markets in your jurisdiction and any significant recent market developments
  • Please provide a brief overview of forthcoming changes to the law or other matters that may affect the loan markets or the responses to the questions below
  • Lending
  • Is it necessary to obtain any consents or licenses in order to lend in your jurisdiction or enforce rights under a loan agreement and if so what is the process for obtaining the consent or license? Are there any other restrictions on lending that foreign lenders should be aware of?
  • Are there any taxes, duties or other charges associated with making loans to entities that are incorporated in your jurisdiction? Please include information on whether withholding tax is payable on interest payments under loan agreements
  • Are there any restrictions, controls, fees, taxes or charges on foreign exchange in your jurisdiction?
  • How is debt normally transferred in your jurisdiction?
  • Security and guarantees
  • More...

Belgium—cross border banking and finance guide

Loan market and developments

Please provide a brief overview of the current state of the loan markets in your jurisdiction and any significant recent market developments

Please note that the below does not take into account any consequences or developments following a possible Brexit.

Ten years after the crisis, the financial sector in Belgium has undergone a metamorphosis. The banking system has contracted mainly because of restructuring operations in entities that received government support. Banks have adopted more traditional business models, with greater emphasis on domestic lending and deposit funding.

The credit cycle is intensifying, bolstered by both the economic recovery and the highly favourable financing conditions. In general, lending to businesses has continued to rise, while the growth of loans to households has stabilised. According to the Financial Stability Report 2018 of the National Bank of Belgium, the annual growth of business loans stood at 5.8 % in February 2018, compared to 4.9 % for households.

Since improving economic conditions and low interest rates increased the appetite for borrowing in the private sector, loans to non-financial corporations and to households accounted for the largest part of the €24bn expansion (to €590bn). While loans to non-financial corporations rose by €7bn (mainly to the manufacturing and wholesale and retail trade sectors), loans to households increased by €13bn (largely mortgage loans). More than half of those

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