Greek Finance Ministry Announces Changes to Capital Controls

capital708_6Greek finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos announced new adjustments to the capital controls on the Greek economy.

Capital controls have restricted transactions and liquidity in Greece since June 28, a day after the July 5 referendum was officially announced. Since then, the government has eased certain restrictions but the bulk of limitations remain.

According to the latest changes, debt-holders can now repay old loans with either cash and funds that are currently abroad or by taking out a new loan from a bank.

The new decree also allows individuals to open new bank accounts but without the ability to withdraw funds from that account. The account can be used to pay money owed to the Greek state and social insurance agencies which have the option of setting up new bank accounts to receive such payments.

An additional new bank account, also without the option of withdrawal, is permitted if that account is used to repay loans in Greece.

According to the new decree, Greek students studying abroad can receive 5,000 euros per trimester. The announcement does not clarify the relationship of the sender to the student. In certain cases the permitted amount could be up to 8,000 euros.

Finally, each individual bank depositor can transfer 500 euros per month to a foreign account.