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Banking in Gibraltar

Gibraltar enjoys a reputation as being a reputable and strong finance centre.  Most banks in Gibraltar are either subsidiaries or branches of major UK or Europe banks.   These operate very similar to UK banks and are usually English and Spanish speaking.

The Financial Services Commission is the government body for licensing and regulating banks, although it should be noted that branches of EEA-authorised banks operating in Gibraltar often operate under the terms of their home country and in accordance with European legislation.  The Financial Services (Banking) Act 1992, which has been amended several times and has various supporting regulations, provides the legal framework for the supervision of banking services in Gibraltar.  There are stringent procedures in place with regards to the granting of banking licences.  Licensed banks must maintain a solvency ratio of 10%.

Banks in Gibraltar operate at a high level of confidentiality and will only disclose names of beneficial owners in the event of serious criminal activity.

Gibraltar had a banking sector way out of proportion to its population due to its success as an offshore financial centre.  This has somewhat decreased due to restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, although this still remains very high for a country its size.  The majority of banks exclusively engage in offshore activities with the remaining combining onshore and offshore.  Gibraltar generally targets high net individuals.

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