For more information on capital credits, you may download the Capital Credits Brochure. The capital fund helps finance a variety of long-term capital needs including trucks, inventory, equipment, transformers, and power line construction. By combining capital credit funds with money borrowed from other sources on which CEC does pay interest , this allows the cooperative to lower its overall cost of capital. The goal of the cooperative is to retire capital credits every year and retire the oldest credits first.
If you have any changes in your mailing address, inform CEC. The company will advertise their names in The Bulletin from June through September and list members on its website from June through the end of the year. If you were a member of CEC and would like to learn if you are listed among those whose payments are unclaimed, please search for your name or business using the Unclaimed Capital Credits Lookup table below.
These two directives constitute the harmonized prudential requirements necessary to implement the single banking license. Both follow closely the recommendations on capital standards by the Committee on Banking Regulation and Supervisory Practices of the Bank for International Settlements known as the Cooke Committee or the Basle Committee. According to the Second Banking Directive, subsidiaries of foreign banks will generally be able to operate under the same conditions as EC banks.
They may engage in all of the activities authorized in the EC country in which they were first established and where they are supervised. While existing EC-based subsidiaries will be covered by a grandfather clause, newly established subsidiaries will be subject to a reciprocity requirement. Branches of banks not headquartered in the EC may not have the right to provide services throughout the EC. The rules for establishing branches of non-EC-originating institutions have not been set on an EC-wide basis and are likely to remain subject to the discretion of each member state.
The original draft of the Second Banking Directive called for reciprocity based on equivalent treatment. This would have implied that non-EC countries would be required to grant EC banks the same treatment as that granted by the EC. Since Europe has a universal banking tradition, while the United States and Japan still impose a legal dividing line between banking and securities operations, this approach was heavily criticized both within and outside the Community.
The directive was subsequently modified and the EC has indicated that it will apply the principle of national treatment. This implies that foreign banks will have access to the EC if their home countries do not discriminate between EC banks and domestic banks. However, the Commission will continue to use equivalent access as a bargaining tool. Subsidiaries of non-EC banks established in the Community prior to the implementation of the directive are subject to grandfathering provisions and will be treated as Community banks.
Initially, the talks between the EC and EFTA focused mainly on proposals regarding solvency and equity requirements, deposit insurance schemes, and accounting standards. All EFTA countries are currently revising their legislation and practices to conform more closely with internationally accepted standards, as well as with EC standards.
This may call for changes in the legislation of some EFTA countries with respect to current limitations on foreign ownership and establishment. In Austria, foreign banks may establish subsidiaries and acquire shares in Austrian banks.
Subject to authorization, they may also establish branches. The Nordic countries all have restrictions on foreign ownership and establishment. However, all countries have recently taken important steps to liberalize these restrictions. Although the existing legislation in Finland limits foreign ownership to 20 percent of Finnish banks, foreigners can acquire up to percent with special permission.
Finland is considering allowing foreign banks to establish Finnish branches. In Iceland, while foreign participation in nonbank financial institutions is already permitted, banks may have only representative offices. However, Iceland recently declared its interest in opening its banking industry to limited foreign competition, and new legislation has been prepared to allow foreign ownership of up to 25 percent of shares in Icelandic banks.
Norwegian banking legislation generally limits foreign ownership in Norwegian institutions. Beginning July 1, , Sweden lifted the special ban on foreign ownership of Swedish banks, securities firms, and consumer-oriented finance companies, although the general provisions limiting foreign participation in Swedish companies still apply to banks.
Foreign banks will also be able to establish branches. All countries are considering further liberalization measures. EC reactions to these moves have been positive. Provided that certain key provisions are adopted, the EC seems to be willing to include the EFTA countries in the internal market for banking services.
The insurance industry in the Community already enjoys freedom of establishment. The EC has long had a body of legislation that coordinates national laws both on the establishment and the operation of insurance companies. Community laws cover the setting up of new companies, the opening of new branches, and supervision. However, reflecting considerable differences in national regulations, a number of obstacles remain that limit the freedom of an insurance company in one member state to cover risks in others.
The basic initiatives covering non-life insurance are included in the Second Non-Life Insurance Directive, adopted in June Any insurance company based in the EC will be able to cover large risks throughout the EC without having to establish itself in other than its home country.
The directive is the follow-up to a decision by the European Court of Justice, which found that the freedom to provide insurance services already existed on the basis of the Treaty of Rome. However, the Court also declared that, in some areas, certain restrictions against insurers from other member states were compatible with the Treaty. The Court saw a particular need to protect small clients.
As a consequence, the ruling distinguishes between large risks, which relate to larger commercial and industrial clients, and mass risks, which relate to small businesses and individuals. For large risks, only simple notification is required for providing services in other member states. The access procedure for mass risk insurance is more complicated. Since national supervision and control is considered more important in this area, some retention of host country control has been deemed necessary.
Therefore, in order to realize a common market for mass risk insurance, the EC may have to take further action to harmonize national regulations. A proposal for a directive on these matters was tabled by the Commission in July In contrast to the Second Banking Directive, the Second Non-Life Insurance Directive deals only with cross-border provision of services and does not provide for Community-wide branching of insurance companies under home country control.
Therefore, the EC is considering a framework directive for non-life insurance that will introduce a single license and home country control for all insurance risks. A similar directive is to be proposed on life insurance policies. This directive also will deal with technical reserves, the choice and content of laws applicable to insurance contracts, and administrative procedures regulating the activities of insurance companies outside their home state. The EC took a further step toward a unified market in life insurance policies by adopting the Second Life Insurance Directive in December This directive essentially frees Community citizens to take out life insurance policies in any member state.
However, it distinguishes between the case where an individual wishes to take out a policy in a country other than his resident country—in which case he would have to accept the degree of protection in the country of the insurer—and the case where an insurance company wishes to conclude an agreement outside its resident country—which requires the insurance company to accept the provisions of the country in which the risk is located.
This is an exception to the principle of home country control. Further harmonization efforts are being considered to achieve a common market for life insurance policies. Once a subsidiary is established in any member state, it is free to compete with EC companies on an equal footing.
Moreover, the First Non-Life Insurance Directive and the First Life Insurance Directive both seem to imply that branches of non-EC companies would be subject to certain provisions requiring them to deposit assets relative to their commitments in each member state. Most member states have also filed exceptions to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development OECD code on capital movements, which would allow them to apply reciprocity requirements on non-EC countries.
Finally, as in banking, the freedom of non-EC insurers to provide services does not apply to branches or operations of companies headquartered outside the Community. Switzerland was the first country to do so. Swiss companies will be able to operate in the EC through agencies or branches provided that Switzerland grants EC companies equal rights.
It is valid only as long as Switzerland keeps its legislation in line with that of the EC. All of the EFTA countries want their insurance companies to have sufficient scope to operate abroad. In the Nordic countries, the insurance industry has been highly regulated, with prohibitive restrictions on foreign establishment and ownership.
In line with the general trend of financial deregulation in other countries, efforts to liberalize the insurance sector are now being considered. The White Paper envisaged the creation of a unified European securities market system that would link the existing stock exchanges in the Community. A number of directives have been proposed or enacted, aimed at breaking down barriers between national markets. A major step was taken by the Council of Ministers in November with the adoption of a directive establishing the free marketing of units issued by investment funds.
Several directives have focused mainly on harmonizing listing and information requirements. The Commission has also proposed a directive on investment services that would provide for a single authorization procedure for firms wishing to engage in investment advice, brokerage dealing, market making, and portfolio management in the Community. This directive gives securities houses the same freedoms as banks. It also contains reciprocity provisions similar to those in the Second Banking Directive.
Foreign investment houses have already been able to operate in most EFTA countries for several years. These companies have worked almost exclusively in the wholesale market. The talks between the EC and EFTA have dealt primarily with issues such as insider dealing, requirements for stock exchange registration, and the activities of investment funds.
Since a complete integration of financial markets is impossible without free movement of capital, the EC has made rapid progress in this area. In June , the Council of Ministers adopted a directive that called for a complete removal of all remaining capital controls in most EC countries by July 1, Several countries implemented the directive well in advance of the deadline. While France and Italy abolished remaining restrictions in January and May, respectively, Belgium and Luxembourg abolished their two-tier exchange market in March.
However, Ireland and Spain have been authorized to maintain certain restrictions until the end of and through the end of in the cases of Greece and Portugal. The directive contains safeguard clauses that allow member states to reintroduce restrictions on short-term capital movements in the event of disturbances to monetary and exchange rate policies.
Such restrictions must be authorized by the Council and may be maintained for a period not to exceed six months. This implies that the liberalization of capital movements be accomplished unilaterally, on a worldwide basis. However, this does not prevent the application of any reciprocity requirements in other areas. In this connection, direct investment, the provision of financial services, and the admission of securities to capital markets are explicitly mentioned.
The EFTA countries have gone through a similar liberalization process. However, until recently, all the Nordic countries maintained tight capital and exchange controls. Sweden removed all remaining restrictions in July Norway removed most of its existing restrictions on the corporate and institutional sectors in December Effective July 1, , Norway abolished nearly all remaining restrictions, including those affecting individuals.
Finland has taken similar steps. Iceland still retains a rather comprehensive system of restrictions, but the Government intends to implement extensive liberalization measures by The freedom of capital movement raises a number of fiscal issues with respect to the scope for tax harmonization and its realization Bovenberg and Tanzi, The EC Commission has so far considered three options: increased cooperation and exchange of information among national tax authorities; stepped-up reporting requirements; and a minimum withholding tax imposed on dividends and interest income imposed at the source on all EC residents.
Initially, the Commission opted for the third approach as it proposed a minimum withholding tax of 15 percent on interest income in February After much opposition from some member countries, the Commission shifted the emphasis in the direction of enhancing the exchange of information to assist member governments in enforcing taxation of their respective residents. The final solution remains unclear.
Taxation is outside the scope of the Oslo-Brussels process. However, as in the EC, the EFTA countries will have to reconsider their tax systems in the process of liberalizing capital movements. In the course of implementing the internal market program, certain proposals have been withdrawn and others have been added.
For a recent overview of the legislation covering financial services and capital movements, see European Documentation
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