Workforce Payments Guide Belgium
Last updated: Dec 17, 2023
Papaya Global fully supports payments coverage in Belgium
Papaya Global supports payments to contractors in Belgium. The payout currency may vary based on the receiver bank account setup when receiving foreign currencies. it is advised for contractors to reach out to their bank to confirm how foreign currencies are handled
|IBAN Example Belguim
|IBAN in print
|BE03 7359 2836 7584
|Bank Account Number
KYC procedure in Belgium is governed by various laws and regulations, such as the Law of Payments and Payment Services, the Banking Rules and Regulations, the Anti-Money Laundering Law, and the Rules on Cross-Border Bankruptcy Procedures. Generally it requires the following steps:
Obtaining and verifying the customer’s identification documents, such as national ID card, passport, driving license, or credit/debit card. The documents must be authenticated by the relevant authorities, such as the National Bank of Belgium (NBB) or the Financial Services and Markets Authority (FSMA).
Collecting and verifying the customer’s personal information, such as name, date of birth, place of birth, address, phone number, email, occupation, and source of funds. The information must be updated regularly and checked against local and international sanctions lists and watchlists.
Assessing and monitoring the customer’s risk profile, behavior, and transaction patterns. The risk assessment must be based on a risk-based approach that considers the nature, size, and complexity of the business. The risk monitoring must include reporting any suspicious or unusual activities to the Belgian Financial Intelligence Processing Unit (CTIF-CFI).
The KYC procedure in Belgium is subject to regular audits and inspections by the competent authorities
Banking laws and regulations that impact cross-border workforce payments in Belgium include:
The Cross-Border Payments Regulation, which aims to reduce the costs and increase the transparency of cross-border payments in the EU, including currency conversion charges. The regulation requires payment service providers to charge the same fees for cross-border payments in euros as for corresponding national payments, and to disclose the full cost of currency conversion before the transaction is initiated.
The Law of Payments and Payment Services, which transposes the EU Payment Services Directive (PSD2) into Belgian law. The law regulates the provision of payment services and products in Belgium, including cross-border payments. The law requires payment service providers to obtain a license from the National Bank of Belgium (NBB) or the Financial Services and Markets Authority (FSMA), comply with anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing rules, report transactions to the Belgian Financial Intelligence Processing Unit (CTIF-CFI), and protect the data and privacy of their customers.
The Banking Rules and Regulations, which govern the banking sector in Belgium, including foreign banks that operate or engage in cross-border electronic banking activities in the Belgian market. The rules and regulations require banks to obtain a license from the NBB or the FSMA, adhere to certain standards and codes of conduct, and follow the NBB’s or the FSMA’s instructions and circulars.
The Anti-Money Laundering Law, which aims to prevent and combat money laundering and terrorist financing in Belgium, including cross-border transactions. The law imposes obligations and duties on financial institutions and other entities that deal with money or property, such as verifying the identity and background of their customers, reporting suspicious or unusual activities to the CTIF-CFI, and keeping records and documents.
The Rules on Cross-Border Bankruptcy Procedures, which provide a framework for the recognition and enforcement of foreign bankruptcy procedures in Belgium, as well as judicial assistance to foreign officeholders involved in such procedures. The rules outline the conditions and procedures for requesting and granting recognition, the effects and consequences of recognition, and the forms of judicial assistance available.”
Bank Account Opening
The following documents are required:
- Business owner’s ID details
- Documents confirming the company’s registration in Belgium
It generally takes about 2 working days to set up the account. However, this can vary depending on the bank and the specifics of the situation
Bank of America
Local Major Banks
Major local banks in Belgium include:
BNP Paribas Fortis
Local B2C Payments Tools
Bancontact: This is Belgium’s local debit payment method PayPal: This is a widely used digital wallet in Belgium.
Credit Cards: Credit cards, including Visa, MasterCard, and American Express, are commonly used for online shopping.
SOFORT: This is an online direct payment method and works via online banking.
Internet Banking Links: Some banks like Belfius, KBC, CBC, and ING Home’Pay offer their own internet banking solutions.
Cryptocurrency is regulated in Belgium. The Fifth Money Laundering Directive (5MLD) extended the Fourth Money Laundering Directive (4MLD) regime to providers engaged in exchange services between virtual and fiat currencies, and to custodian wallet providers1.
Virtual asset service providers with a Belgian fixed establishment are subject to registration with, and the supervision of the Belgian Financial Services and Markets Authority (FSMA)1.
Here are some activities and their regulation status in Belgium:
Exchange (buy/sell): Regulated
Custody (hold): Regulated
Borrowing/lending: Unregulated (but could potentially fall under consumer credit regulations)
Please note that non-EU providers are prohibited to target the Belgian market.