Greece has taken further steps to ease the capital control restrictions as of 1. March 2018. Euclid Tsakalotos has approved a series of measures that ease the restrictions, the decision has been already published in the official gazette. The measures raise among others the monthly withdrawal limit and allow the opening of new bank accounts.
Cchanges in capital controls:
- The monthly withdrawal limit is raised to 2,300 euros from 1,800 since June 2015. The withdrawal refers to calendar months and withdrawals from Greek and banks abroad.
- Travelers abroad are allowed to take with them banknotes in euro or other currency up to 2,300 euros. The limit was €2,000 until now. The provision applies to natural persons per travel abroad.
- Capital transfer abroad is up to 2,000 euros per customer ID every two months.
- Citizens, companies or other bodies, will be able to open bank accounts in banks they did not have one until now.
- Bank account owners will be able to add more co-owners independently of the customer ID.
The measures go into effect on March 1st 2018.
The finance ministry said in a statement that the decision to ease capital controls is part of the road map for the gradual easing of restrictions in withdrawals and money trasnfer abroad. Aim of authorities is the full lifting of restrictions as soon as possible while maintaining the financial and macroeconomic stability, the statement notes.
Capital controls were imposed end June 2015, amid tough negotiations between Greece and its European creditors and after the European Central Bank had cut the liquidity life line to Greece followng orders by German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble as a blackmail measure.
Ever since the beginning of the capital controls the daily withdrawal cap was limited to 60 euros, that is 1,800 euros per month.
Many Greeks, possibly also government officials, had thought that the capital controls would be totally lifted within a year. Little did they know…