ECONOMY

Draft bill tabled to protect deposits

The Finance Ministry introduced legislation in Parliament yesterday that raises the guarantee on bank deposits to 100,000 euros for three years. «Based on our political commitment to guarantee all bank deposits, which stands, we submitted an amendment in Parliament as part of a bill on borrower protection,» Economy and Finance Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis said before the House. «Greece’s banking system is absolutely safe and sound,» he said. Greece will raise the guarantee on bank deposits to 100,000 euros from a current 20,000 limit for three years in an effort to boost confidence in banks as the deepening global financial crisis has savers worried about their deposits. Investors who have more than 100,000 euros in several accounts at a single bank will only be covered for a total of 100,000 euros, according to the ministry. However, savers who have split their investments into accounts at different banks, will benefit from the 100,000-euro guarantee at every bank that they do business with. According to industry sources, the value of deposits in Greece’s financial system is estimated at around 230 billion euros – roughly equivalent to Greece’s annual gross domestic product. (Kathimerini, Reuters)