Greece to ease capital controls ‘very soon,’ finance minister says

Greek Finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos attends a eurozone finance ministers meeting in Brussels, Belgium May 22, 2017.

Greece plans to further loosen capital controls soon and is on track to lift all restrictions imposed three years ago, its finance minister said Saturday.

“We will have new easing (of capital controls) very soon,” Euclid Tsakalotos was quoted as saying in an interview with Naftemporiki newspaper, without specifying when.

“With this new easing we will complete the second pillar (of regulations) concerning cash withdrawals and the opening of bank accounts, and we will enter the final phase for the full lifting of capital controls, the third and final pillar… concerning restrictions on moving capital abroad,” he said.

Greece imposed capital controls to stem a flight of cash from its banks in July 2015, when, at the height of its debt crisis, it faced bankruptcy and a euro exit.

Last month it emerged from its final of three international bailouts and almost nine years of austerity. It remains heavily indebted and under fiscal monitoring by the European Union and International Monetary Fund.