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Rules that will govern the accounts in foreign currency in the National Financial System

Resolution No. 12-09-01 (the “Resolution”) of the Venezuelan Central Bank (“VCB”) was published in Official Gazette No. 40.002, dated September 6, 2012.  The Resolution establishes the rules that will govern the accounts in foreign currency in the National Financial System.

The Resolution provides that legal entities not domiciled in the territory of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela that participate in the execution of projects of public investment and projects of general interest, may hold, in accounts with universal banks, deposits of funds in foreign currency necessarily from abroad, received through transfers ordered as a result of lawful transactions.  The accounts may be operated by their holders through total or partial withdrawals in legal currency of the country, at the rate of exchange in effect, or through transfers, checks of the depositary payor bank against its correspondent banks abroad.

Likewise, individuals of legal age, domiciled in the national territory, and legal entities domiciled in the country, may hold, in accounts with universal banks, deposits in foreign currency derived from the liquidation of securities denominated in foreign currency issued by the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela and its decentralized entities or by any other entity, acquired through the System of Primary Placement of Securities in Foreign Currency (Sistema de Colocación Primaria de Títulos en Moneda Extranjera - “SICOTME”) or through the System of Transactions with Securities in Foreign Currency (Sistema de Transacciones con Títulos en Moneda Extranjera - “SITME”), and from other transactions of a lawful character that, according to the rules governing foreign exchange matters, allow them to keep and/or administer said foreign currency.  The accounts may be operated by their holders through total or partial withdrawals in legal currency of the country, at the rate of exchange in effect, or the holders may decide to order the deposit-taking institutions to acquire securities, for their account, in the international financial markets, in order for such securities to be later negotiated through the SITME; also, said accounts may be operated through transfers, checks of the depositary payor bank against its correspondent banks abroad, or through debit instructions for payment of expenses of consumption and withdrawals made with debit cards abroad.

The deposits in foreign currency will not be taken into account for purposes of the constitution of the legal reserve.

The Resolution establishes that the funds derived from the liquidation of transactions made through the SITME must be kept in special call deposit accounts in favor of the beneficiaries for a period of time not exceeding twelve (12) months, for individuals, and three (3) months, for legal entities, which periods will begin to elapse on the date of the relevant liquidation of the transaction.  It is also established that the deposits in foreign currency held in time deposit accounts with universal banks, pursuant to the provisions of Exchange Agreement No. 20, except for the aforesaid special call deposit accounts, will accrue interest at the rate to be fixed by the VCB for such deposits, regardless of the period of time in which said transactions are made.

The Resolution imposes on the universal banks the obligation to provide the VCB with monthly information regarding the received deposits in foreign currency, as well as daily information about the global operations and balances of the accounts in foreign currency, in accordance with the instructions and circulars issued to that end.

No check books may be issued for the accounts in foreign currency to which the Resolution refers.  In no case may transfers be made among the accounts in foreign currency regulated by the Resolution and the receipt of checks in foreign currency chargeable to them is prohibited.  Except in the case of cash advances through automatic teller machines abroad, deposits in or withdrawals from the accounts referred to in the Resolution of foreign currency in cash may only be made at the time to be established by the VCB through the regulations to be issued to that end.

The doubts derived from the application or interpretation of the Resolution will be settled by the VCB, by means of specific instructions to be published in the Web page.

Finally, the Resolution will become effective on September 17, 2012.

In order to have access to said Resolution, please click here.

 

“NOTE: THIS INFORMATION SHOULD NOT BE CONSTRUED AS LEGAL ADVICE ON ANY SPECIFIC MATTER AND ITS CONTENT ARE INTENDED AS A MANAGEMENT ALERT AS TO CURRENT DEVELOPMENTS IN VENEZUELA, ANY SPECIFIC LEGAL QUESTIONS REGARDING THE POSSIBLE APPLICATION OF NEW OR PROPOSED LEGISLATION TO PARTICULAR SITUATIONS SHOULD BE ADDRESSED TO TRAVIESO EVANS ARRIA RENGEL & PAZ.”