12 CFR § 211.3 - Foreign branches of U.S. banking organizations.

§ 211.3 Foreign branches of U.S. banking organizations.

(a) General -

(1) Definition of banking organization. For purposes of this section, a banking organization is defined as a member bank and its affiliates.

(2) A banking organization is considered to be operating a branch in a foreign country if it has an affiliate that is a member bank, Edge or agreement corporation, or foreign bank that operates an office (other than a representative office) in that country.

(3) For purposes of this subpart, a foreign office of an operating subsidiary of a member bank shall be treated as a foreign branch of the member bank and may engage only in activities permissible for a branch of a member bank.

(4) At any time upon notice, the Board may modify or suspend branching authority conferred by this section with respect to any banking organization.


(1) Establishment of foreign branches.

(i) Foreign branches may be established by any member bank having capital and surplus of $1,000,000 or more, an Edge corporation, an agreement corporation, any subsidiary the shares of which are held directly by the member bank, or any other subsidiary held pursuant to this subpart.

(ii) The Board grants its general consent under section 25 of the FRA (12 U.S.C. 601-604a) for a member bank to establish a branch in the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the overseas territories, dependencies, and insular possessions of the United States.

(2) Prior notice. Unless otherwise provided in this section, the establishment of a foreign branch requires 30 days' prior written notice to the Board.

(3) Branching into additional foreign countries. After giving the Board 12 business days prior written notice, a banking organization that operates branches in two or more foreign countries may establish a branch in an additional foreign country.

(4) Additional branches within a foreign country. No prior notice is required to establish additional branches in any foreign country where the banking organization operates one or more branches.

(5) Branching by nonbanking affiliates. No prior notice is required for a nonbanking affiliate of a banking organization (i.e., an organization that is not a member bank, an Edge or agreement corporation, or foreign bank) to establish branches within a foreign country or in additional foreign countries.

(6) Expiration of branching authority. Authority to establish branches, when granted following prior written notice to the Board, shall expire one year from the earliest date on which the authority could have been exercised, unless extended by the Board.

(c) Reporting. Any banking organization that opens, closes, or relocates a branch shall report such change in a manner prescribed by the Board.

(d) Reserves of foreign branches of member banks. Member banks shall maintain reserves against foreign branch deposits when required by Regulation D (12 CFR part 204).

(e) Conditional approval; access to information. The Board may impose such conditions on authority granted by it under this section as it deems necessary, and may require termination of any activities conducted under authority of this section if a member bank is unable to provide information on its activities or those of its affiliates that the Board deems necessary to determine and enforce compliance with U.S. banking laws.

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