General Law No. 26702 of the Financial and Insurance Systems
(amended through 2009)
General Law No. 26702 of the Financial and Insurance Systems (Ley General del Sistema Financiero y del Sistema de Seguros y Orgánica de la Superintendencia de Banca y Seguros) sets forth the regulatory and supervisory framework for the Superintendency of Banking and Insurance (SBS), as well as companies operating in the financial and insurance systems in Peru, including those carrying out activities in the microfinance sector. The law regulates commercial banks and three specialized types of financial entities, defined therein, that engage in microfinance services: (1) municipal savings and credit banks (CMACs), (2) rural savings and credit banks (CRACs), and (3) entities for development of small and micro enterprises (EDPYMEs). Unless otherwise expressly provided, the law does not affect the Central Bank (SBS and the Central Bank are two separate entities).
The law includes provisions that:
- Describe in detail common provisions applicable to financial and insurance companies, including incorporation, license, liquidation and other authorization mandatory for companies operating in these businesses;
- Prescribe guidelines for entities operating in the financial system, including prohibitions, operations and the types of companies falling under this system; and
- Provide guidelines for entities operating in the microfinance sector, which include definition of companies that can engage in microfinance services (Article 282), minimum capital requirements for these institutions (Article 16) and operations permissible for such entities.
SBS is responsible for the defense of public interest, guaranteeing economic and financial soundness of individuals and corporations under its control; enforcing legal, regulatory and statutory regulations governing their activities; practicing, to that end, the broadest control over all of their transactions and businesses, filing criminal claims against unauthorized individuals and corporations practicing the activities set forth in this law, and closing their offices, and, as applicable, requesting the dissolution and liquidation of the violator.
The above summary is based on the English version of Law No. 26702, as amended through 2004. Since then, several laws have been passed that extensively amend Law No. 26702 and are incorporated into the attached Spanish version. The 2004 English language version of this law can be found under “Other Language Versions.” The amendments cover the following topics, among many others:
- Conversion of the Mortgage Fund for the Promotion of Housing;
- Misconduct of SBS;
- Regulation of secured transactions;
- Establishment of mortgage service companies;
- System of supervision; and
- Measurements of risk.