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Bank Account in EU
Thread poster: Mohamed Mehenoun

Mohamed Mehenoun  Identity Verified
Algeria
Local time: 14:52
Member (2008)
English to French
+ ...
Dec 12, 2008

Hello,

I started my technical translation business online while I am located in Algeria. The only drawback I'm facing is that the banking system in Algeria is archaic and make it impossible for me to receive payments. Actually, I'm receiving all my payments via moneybookers. I tried to transfer around 100 EUR to my local bank account and I should confess that those were the 100 EUR that I most worked to get in my whole life as I couldn't get them directly and needed the intervention of a friend a friend to get them depreciated in local currency ( I lost around 30% of the amount) furthermore one can't get a Visa card here...Don't ask me why as I have no idea ! So now I have money but I can't use it properly ! I'm using moneybookers to buy stuff and get the money this way as it is the only way so far I am able to enjoy it but I can't really go on buying online forever !

Anyway, I was thinking about creating a bank account in EUR and would like to know if it could be possible to create it distantly online without being physically present there...

I'm also worried about getting registred as a translator in (UK or Spain), and would like to know if it could be possible to create a translation agency there while I'm physically present in Algeria. the fact is that in Algeria there is no regulation whatsoever regarding online activities while I do believe that there is outhere in EU.

Thanks in advance for your help and suggestions.

Mohamed M.


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Nicolette Scholte  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:52
English to Dutch
+ ...
I don't think it's possible Dec 12, 2008

To open a bank account in a EU country without being physically there, or even living there.
Here in Holland you need to show your BSN-number (a number that is given out by the government and everything is tied to it), so that means that you will virtually have to live here. I also know from Ireland that you have to show an electricity bill or any other proof that you are living there.
You see, most countries in the EU are very careful with opening bank accounts for people not living in that country, as a result that banks in the past were used for money laundering schemes.

I'm afraid I can't help you with your other question.


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Mohamed Mehenoun  Identity Verified
Algeria
Local time: 14:52
Member (2008)
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks ! Dec 12, 2008

Hello,

Thanks for your answer. I thought that some banks would be satisfied enough with a scanned copy of my passport and a resident card...

I'm aware of the fact that the security is tighter (which usually always is prejudicial to honest people !) for money laundering issues.

Thanks again,

Mohamed M.


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alz  Identity Verified
Croatia
Local time: 15:52
English to Croatian
+ ...
non residential account Dec 12, 2008

You may open a so called "non residential account"

You do not need to live in the country of the bank, but you have to do it in person (signing all papers and documents, thus physically present).

All transactions reports, infos and bank correspondence is delivered to your home address (the country where you live).


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Mohamed Mehenoun  Identity Verified
Algeria
Local time: 14:52
Member (2008)
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Do you know any bank who does that ? Dec 12, 2008

alz wrote:

You may open a so called "non residential account"

You do not need to live in the country of the bank, but you have to do it in person (signing all papers and documents, thus physically present).

All transactions reports, infos and bank correspondence is delivered to your home address (the country where you live).


Hello,

Thanks for your answer. Can you recommand me any bank for that ?

Regards,


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Zamira*****  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 16:52
Member (2006)
English to Uzbek
+ ...
Estonia Dec 12, 2008

You can try an Estonian bank, they are known to be liberal. They open accounts to non-residents after checking their information and if they are satisfied with it but you have be present in person to sign papers. I think one would have no problems with opening a personal bank account, I am not so sure about a business account though.

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Fouad ZEMIRLINE
Ireland
Local time: 14:52
English to Arabic
+ ...
Try this. https://www.wirecard.com/wirecard/ Dec 12, 2008

Wirecard: it s virtual Mastercard. I know there's many online services offering prepaid credit cards. but this one will give an IBAN number, which is International Bank Account number. you can top it up from your moneybookers account. you can use it for making payments online.

In case you want to withdraw your money to algeria. get a bank account in algeria. preferably from one of the primary banks there, like BNA. primary banks usually don't need intermediary to route your money from abroad. commercial banks like societe generale and bnp Baripas do need one. also more important as your algerian banker to give you your branch swift or bic code. together with your bank account you will be able to send your money from abroad to algeria.



good luck !


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Mohamed Mehenoun  Identity Verified
Algeria
Local time: 14:52
Member (2008)
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
NOT AVAILABLE IN ALGERIA Dec 12, 2008

Fouad ZEMIRLINE wrote:

Wirecard: it s virtual Mastercard. I know there's many online services offering prepaid credit cards. but this one will give an IBAN number, which is International Bank Account number. you can top it up from your moneybookers account. you can use it for making payments online.

In case you want to withdraw your money to algeria. get a bank account in algeria. preferably from one of the primary banks there, like BNA. primary banks usually don't need intermediary to route your money from abroad. commercial banks like societe generale and bnp Baripas do need one. also more important as your algerian banker to give you your branch swift or bic code. together with your bank account you will be able to send your money from abroad to algeria.



good luck !


Thanks for the advice. Wirecard says that it is not available in my country is there another similar service for Visa or whatever card I may use ?


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Philippe Etienne  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 15:52
Member
English to French
Convertible account in Algeria? Dec 13, 2008

As an exporter of services, you should be able to receive payment into your own country. There is no reason why you couldn't, unless the state want the informal economy to thrive and capital to stay out of the country.
I don't know about Algeria, but in Morocco banks are very happy to open a convertible account and allow business people to bring in hard currency to the country (fiscal incentives also apply). The only drawback in convertible accounts is that you cannot go overdrawn. Which is also an advantage in a way.
Here there are no IBAN or online banking facilities, but established foreign customers from anywhere pay me via wire transfer in whatever currency I charge and it lands a few days later on my business account in MAD (Moroccan dirham) via the national Exchange Office. Of course everybody takes their cut (Exchange Office tax, bank fee and exchange rate difference buy/sell), but I can convert all the money from this account into whatever currency I wish, or transfer it to any other bank account in the world without asking permission from any administration (although everybody also takes their cut).
Getting an international credit card on this account is not easy, but I convinced my branch manager to get me one. It wasn't possible a few years ago. Unfortunately, it doesn't allow online payments and I might not be able to pay with it over the counter abroad. But I can withdraw local currency abroad in any ATM, apparently.

If you haven't done so, I suggest you visit several banks and describe your problem. Tell them it's possible in Morocco, it may make them move!

Bonne fête (un peu tard),
Philippe


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Mohamed Mehenoun  Identity Verified
Algeria
Local time: 14:52
Member (2008)
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Indeed they are encouraging informal business Dec 13, 2008

Philippe Etienne wrote:

As an exporter of services, you should be able to receive payment into your own country. There is no reason why you couldn't, unless the state want the informal economy to thrive and capital to stay out of the country.
I don't know about Algeria, but in Morocco banks are very happy to open a convertible account and allow business people to bring in hard currency to the country (fiscal incentives also apply). The only drawback in convertible accounts is that you cannot go overdrawn. Which is also an advantage in a way.
Here there are no IBAN or online banking facilities, but established foreign customers from anywhere pay me via wire transfer in whatever currency I charge and it lands a few days later on my business account in MAD (Moroccan dirham) via the national Exchange Office. Of course everybody takes their cut (Exchange Office tax, bank fee and exchange rate difference buy/sell), but I can convert all the money from this account into whatever currency I wish, or transfer it to any other bank account in the world without asking permission from any administration (although everybody also takes their cut).
Getting an international credit card on this account is not easy, but I convinced my branch manager to get me one. It wasn't possible a few years ago. Unfortunately, it doesn't allow online payments and I might not be able to pay with it over the counter abroad. But I can withdraw local currency abroad in any ATM, apparently.

If you haven't done so, I suggest you visit several banks and describe your problem. Tell them it's possible in Morocco, it may make them move!

Bonne fête (un peu tard),
Philippe


Thanks ! Actually I had to justify (local funds) why I needed to withdraw a large amount from my bank. As for foreign currency account currently you can't withdraw or deposit without a heap of papers !

The problem I am facing is that they request contracts to let you get your money (and you'll only get it in local currency) furthermore the e-business isn't regulated...

And indeed they are

And yes this is making informal economy to thrive and capital to stay out of the country, as an example if I want to go on a trip abroad I'll only be able to convert (without using the black market and going through normal channels) around the equivalent of 160 EUR !

Merci, et bonne fête en avance

Mohamed


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Dana David Kogan  Identity Verified
Israel
Local time: 16:52
Romanian to Hebrew
+ ...
try this Dec 13, 2008

Hello Mohamed,
there are in many countries (look up) what you call e-bank. it is a virtual bank where you open an account through e-mail. They deliver even checkbooks in about 7 days from the day you are accepted as a client. See if your country accepts these checks.
It is worth to open anyway. PayPal works with them and I think Moneybookers too. I am going to open an account on e-bank.com (USA).

Hope this info will help,
success and please let us know about further developments,
Dana


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Mohamed Mehenoun  Identity Verified
Algeria
Local time: 14:52
Member (2008)
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Doesn't work ! Dec 13, 2008

dadav wrote:


Hello Mohamed,
there are in many countries (look up) what you call e-bank. it is a virtual bank where you open an account through e-mail. They deliver even checkbooks in about 7 days from the day you are accepted as a client. See if your country accepts these checks.
It is worth to open anyway. PayPal works with them and I think Moneybookers too. I am going to open an account on e-bank.com (USA).

Hope this info will help,
success and please let us know about further developments,
Dana


Hello

The link you sent me seems to be a search engine and doesn't give any service whatsoever...

I think I git it, it's ebank.com instead of e-bank.com I'll contact them right away and keep you informed

Many thanks !

[Edited at 2008-12-13 11:02 GMT]


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Philippe Etienne  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 15:52
Member
English to French
Sigh Dec 13, 2008

Mohamed Mehenoun wrote:
Thanks ! Actually I had to justify (local funds) why I needed to withdraw a large amount from my bank. As for foreign currency account currently you can't withdraw or deposit without a heap of papers !

The problem I am facing is that they request contracts to let you get your money (and you'll only get it in local currency) furthermore the e-business isn't regulated...
...
And yes this is making informal economy to thrive and capital to stay out of the country, as an example if I want to go on a trip abroad I'll only be able to convert (without using the black market and going through normal channels) around the equivalent of 160 EUR !
...

Oh I see... Since I've been here, Morocco has improved a lot so with these matters. A natural person is allowed something like 2keuros a year for expenses abroad. Still not ideal, and our currency black market might be in a better shape than the local economy.
Before I came here, it seems that doing international business in Morocco (paying foreign suppliers/getting foreign payments) was an awful paperwork headache just as what you describe. Of course the more people you "knew", the easier.
How frustrating... My sympathies.
Philippe


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Mohamed Mehenoun  Identity Verified
Algeria
Local time: 14:52
Member (2008)
English to French
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
:( Dec 13, 2008

Philippe Etienne wrote:

Mohamed Mehenoun wrote:
Thanks ! Actually I had to justify (local funds) why I needed to withdraw a large amount from my bank. As for foreign currency account currently you can't withdraw or deposit without a heap of papers !

The problem I am facing is that they request contracts to let you get your money (and you'll only get it in local currency) furthermore the e-business isn't regulated...
...
And yes this is making informal economy to thrive and capital to stay out of the country, as an example if I want to go on a trip abroad I'll only be able to convert (without using the black market and going through normal channels) around the equivalent of 160 EUR !
...

Oh I see... Since I've been here, Morocco has improved a lot so with these matters. A natural person is allowed something like 2keuros a year for expenses abroad. Still not ideal, and our currency black market might be in a better shape than the local economy.
Before I came here, it seems that doing international business in Morocco (paying foreign suppliers/getting foreign payments) was an awful paperwork headache just as what you describe. Of course the more people you "knew", the easier.
How frustrating... My sympathies.
Philippe


Thanks ! And yep the more you "know" the easiest !


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Wolfgang Jörissen  Identity Verified
Belize
Member
Dutch to German
+ ...
Is it really that hard? Dec 13, 2008

I know of cases in which a German bank has opened an account for a non-German resident. The person was living outside of the Euro zone but within the EU. However, I do not think it would make any difference it this was not the case. After all, what do they risk? You are a client, not a beggar.

By the way, they have Euro accounts in Switzerland as well, and AFAIK, they are open towards foreigners.

[Edited at 2008-12-13 12:00 GMT]


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