A transfusion of treasure

By providing incentives for the repatriation of capital deposited by Greek residents in foreign banks, the government is tapping into a source of investment estimated by banks to be between 70 and 80 billion euros. A top government official told Kathimerini that the announcement of the incentives by Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis was not an opportunistic move dictated by fiscal woes but is part of a plan to make Greece a financial center that will include further measures to facilitate investment.. Economy and Finance Minister Giorgos Alogoskoufis preferred to hedge his bets yesterday, saying that he expected 5-10 billion euros to be repatriated. But the government, with an eye to Italy’s example of repatriating 98 billion euros, took heart from reports Swiss banks plan to open branches in Greece.