Posted on Jan 5, 2021, 4:52 PMUpdated Jan 5, 2021, 7:50 PM
The US Treasury Department is not done with French banks. OFAC (Office of Foreign Assets Control), its armed wing in charge of international sanctions, has just imposed a fine against a Franco-Arab subsidiary of Crédit Agricole, the UBAF (Union of Arab and French Banks ). Very discreet, this establishment, of which the Green Bank is the main shareholder (at 47%), has been a historical player in international trade between France, the Middle East, Africa and Asia since its creation in 1970 by public banks. French (including Crédit Lyonnais) and 25 countries in the Arab world. The bank has a long-standing involvement in Libya.
Under investigation for more than five years, UBAF agreed to pay $ 8.57 million to OFAC to close 127 civil lawsuits related to its dollar transactions with Syrian financial institutions between 2011 and 2013, for a total of over $ 2 billion. Some 114 of them amounted to $ 1.3 billion, in the form of internal transfers or foreign exchange transactions with Syrian entities under US sanctions. Other transactions concerned letters of credit for the benefit of these entities.