ECONOMY

Exchange of bank data with the US

Within the next couple of months Greece will need to incorporate the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) in its legislation, according to which Greek banks must report to US tax authorities the account movements of US citizens in the local banking system.

In certain cases, the US authorities also include foreign banks that are Greek subsidiaries in the local credit system and incorporate their results in those of the parent group’s.

The agreement, which allows the American law to be applied in Greece, will also allow Greek authorities to glean information from US banks regarding the transactions of Greek citizens.

The agreement with the US coincides with a discussion in the European Union on a stricter legislative framework governing money laundering. The project for the new framework was considerably advanced during the Greek presidency of the bloc earlier this year, but the latest addition to the plan concerns the creation of a registry of the actual owners of companies in every country. This comes in response to a demand by the G8 group of heavily industrialized countries for full transparency in corporate entities, particularly offshore companies.