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BANQUE DU LIBAN

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Committees & Commissions

Higher Banking Commission

  • Overview

    The Higher Banking Commission (the Commission) was established at Banque du Liban (BDL) in 1967, pursuant to Article 10 of Law No 28/67.

     

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    MISSION
     
    The main mission of the Higher Banking Commission is to:

    • Impose administrative sanctions on any bank1, leasing company2, financial institution or financial intermediation institution3 that:
      • violates its bylaws
      • violates the provisions of the Code of Money and Credit
      • violates the measures prescribed by Banque du Liban
      • submits incomplete or inaccurate reports or information
    • Impose administrative sanctions on any exchange institution4 that:
      • violates its bylaws
      • violates the provisions of the Code of Commerce
      • violates the provisions of Law 347 of August 6, 2001, on Regulating the Money Changer Profession in Lebanon
      • violates the recommendations or measures prescribed by the Banque du Liban
      • submits incomplete or inaccurate statements or information
      • undertake any activity that damages the reputation of Lebanon in the field of tourism or finance

    In addition, the Commission approves the bylaws and employees' statutes of the Banking Control Commission5.

     

    The Higher Banking Commission is composed of :

     

    • The Governor of the Banque du Liban, as Chairman;
    • A Vice-Governor selected by the Central Council of the Banque du Liban;
    • The Director General of the Ministry of Finance;
    • A high-ranking judge, with a 10-year experience at least, approved by the Higher Judicial Council and appointed by Decree;
    • A member of the Banking Control Commission, nominated by the Association of Banks in Lebanon; 
    • The Chairman of the National Deposit Guarantee Institution (NDGI).

     

    The Higher Banking Commission's incumbent members are:

     

    Riad Salameh, Chairman

    Governor of the BDL

    Muhammad Baasiri

    Third Vice-Governor of the BDL

    Alain  Bifany

    Director General of the Ministry of Finance

    Sami Mansour

    President of the Court of Appeals Division Eight

    Amin Awad

    Member of the Banking Control Commission

    Khater Abi Habib

    Chairman of NDGI

     
    1Article 208 of the Code of Money and Credit.
    2 Article 29 of Law No 160 of December 27, 1999, on Regulating Leasing Operations.
    3 Article 23 of Law No 234 of June 10, 2000, on Regulating the Financial Intermediation Profession
    4 Article 18 of Law No 347 of August 6, 2001 on Regulating the Money Changer Profession in Lebanon
    5 Article 8 of Law No. 28/67 of May 9, 1967 

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    MINUTES OF MEETING

    The Higher Banking Commission meets upon the request of its Chairman or two of its members. The legal quorum is reached with the attendance of four members, and decisions are taken by a majority of three of the attending votes. In case of equality of votes, the Chairman shall have a casting vote.1

     

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    PROCEDURES

    The procedures to be followed before the Higher Banking Commission are as follows:

     

    • The Governor of the Banque du Liban shall: (a) summon the Chairman, or in case of impediment, the manager of the concerned institution2, either directly or through the central bank's employees in charge of serving the notification; (b) give the concerned Chairman or manager a copy of the Banking Control Commission's report forwarded to the Higher Banking Commission; and (c) set a date on which the Chairman or manager must appear before the Higher Banking Commission3.

     

    • The Chairman or his duly mandated delegate may submit to the BDL Governor, in his capacity as Chairman of the Higher Banking Commission, written comments on the Banking Control Commission's report, within three days from reception of the report. The Governor may, with a justified decision, extend this time-limit for three additional days4.

     

    • If the Chairman or manager does not appear before the Higher Banking Commission on the set date, the Higher Banking Commission may decide to postpone the final decision and grant an additional time-limit, or to settle the case in the absence of the Chairman or manager or without receiving their reply5.

     

    • The minutes of each meeting held by the Higher Banking Commission are recorded in a special register and signed by its Chairman and members6

    1 Art 10 of Law No 28/67 of May 9,1967
    2 Bank, financial institution, financial intermediation institution, exchange institution or leasing company.
    3 Article 1 of Decree No.7977 of August 16, 1967
    4 Article 2 of Decree No.7977 of August 16, 1967
    5 Article 3 of Decree No.7977 of August 16, 1967
    6 Article 6 of Decree Nb.7977 of August 16, 1967 

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    DECISIONS

     

    The decision of the Higher Banking Commission must be justified. When a decision concerns the appointment of a temporary manager or a supervisor, the Commission shall specify the powers vested in each of them.1
    Decisions taken by the Commission regarding the appointment of a temporary manager or the delisting of a bank must be published2.
    The BDL Governor shall notify the Commission's decision to the contravening institution.3
    The decisions of the Higher Banking Commission shall not be subjected to any ordinary or extraordinary form of administrative or judicial review.4

     

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    SANCTIONS

     

    The Higher Banking Commission may impose the following administrative sanctions:

    a. Issue a warning.

    b. Prohibit specific operations or imposing other limitations or restrictions on professional activities.

    c. Appoint a controller.

    d. Delisting.

    e. Reduce or suspend credit facilities granted by the Central Bank.

    f. Prohibit the owner of the institution or any of the partners from carrying out their professional activities, either temporarily or in a permanent manner.

     

    Sanctions (a), (b), (c), (d) and (e) are applied against banks and financial institutions5.
    Sanctions (a), (b), (c) and (d) are applied against financial intermediation institutions6 and leasing companies.7
    Sanctions (a), (b), (d) and (f) are applied against exchange institutions8
     

    The administrative sanction of issuing a warning is imposed by decision of the Governor of the Banque du Liban, while the other sanctions are imposed by decision of the Higher Banking Commission.

     

    1 Article 4 of the decree Nb.7977 of August 16, 1967
    2 Article 210 of the Code of Money and Credit
    3 Article 5 of Decree No.7977 of August 16, 1967
    4 Article 209 of the Code of Money and Credit
    5 Article 208 of the Code of Money and Credit
    6 Article 23 of Law No 234 of June 10, 2000, on Regulating the Financial Intermediation Profession
    7 Article 29-1 of Law No 160 of December 27, 1999
    8 Article 19-1 of Law No 347 of August 6, 2001 on Regulating the Money Changer Profession in Lebanon 

Banking Control Commission of Lebanon

  • Overview

     

    The Banking Control Commission of Lebanon (BCCL) was established in 1967 by law no. 28/67, as an administratively independent body to replace the banking control department of the central bank. The commission is composed of five members who are appointed by the council of ministers for a five-year term. 

     

    The BCC's function is to supervise banks, financial institutions, money dealers, brokerage firms and leasing companies. The BCC performs its supervisory functions as an independent body, but in close coordination with the Governor of the Central Bank (who has the legal prerogative to ask for all reports of the BCC). 

     

    For more information visit the BCC official website on www.bccl.gov.lb

Special Investigation Commission

  • Overview

     

    On April 20, 2001 , the Lebanese Parliament passed Law No. 318 on fighting money laundering.

    This law criminalizes the laundering of proceeds from crimes such as: the growing, processing and trading of narcotic plants; organized crime; terrorist acts, and financing of terrorism, illegal arm trade; stealing or embezzling public or private funds or their appropriation by fraudulent means; and counterfeiting money or official documents, money or credit cards or checks.

    The said law defines money-laundering operations, and stipulates the fines and imprisonment penalties imposed on such offences. Under its provisions, the Special Investigation Commission (SIC) was established as an independent legal entity with judicial status. The SIC investigates suspicious transactions, decides on the seriousness of evidence, and has the exclusive right to lift banking secrecy, thus enabling the competent judicial authorities and the Higher Banking Commission to take the necessary measures.

     

    The Commission is composed of:

    a) The Governor of Banque du Liban, as Chairman.

    b) The Chairman of the Banking Control Commission.

    c) The Judge appointed to the Higher Banking Commission.

    d) A professional appointed by the Council of Ministers. 

     

    For more information visit the SIC official website on  www.sic.gov.lb

The Consultative Committee

  • Overview 

     

     A Consultative Committee* may be established at the Banque du Liban in accordance with article 35 of the Code of Money and Credit.

     

    The Consultative Committee is composed of six members who, upon proposal by the Minister of Finance in consultation with BDL, are appointed by Decree of the Council of Ministers for a two-year, renewable term. Four members must be respectively experts in banking, trade, industry and agriculture. One of them is to be selected by the Planning Council (currently non-existent), and another must be a university professor of economics of Lebanese nationality. 
     
    The Consultative Committee advises the Governor on general issues, including monetary and credit policy. It submits to the Governor, with its own recommendations, studies on the general economic situation, or on regional or sectorial economic issues.
     
     
    *Currently not functioning; no members appointed