Greece marks year of banking restrictions

ATHENS, Greece – A leading business group in Greece is calling on the government to loosen banking restrictions introduced a year ago when the country faced the risk of exit from the euro.

The National Confederation of Hellenic Commerce, Greece’s main small- and medium-sized business association, said the number of new businesses created so far this year has dropped 18 per cent from the same period in 2015 and 30 per cent from two years ago.

Greece introduced capital controls for bank transactions a year ago Tuesday, amid financial turmoil triggered by bailout negotiation delays.

Country residents can still only withdraw a maximum of 420 euros (around $465) in cash per week, though electronic transactions are subject to fewer restrictions.