(Greece) – Tuesday, June 28, 2016 marked the one year anniversary of the implementation of the tight baking restrictions that are still in place today. The National Confederation of Hellenic Commerce, is calling for the Greek government and baking systems to loosen these restrictions. Last year, the country was considering leaving the European Union and during that time, the current government allowed the people to withdraw only a certain amount of money each day from their accounts. In the weeks leading up to the Greek government’s vote about whether to stay in the EU, which took place last July, which led to financial turmoil. This turmoil is what prompted he baking restrictions.
As a result, people experienced long waits at the ATM and then could only withdraw a certain amount of money. Eventually, Greece opted to stay in the European Union, which helped maintain stability. However, the banking restrictions are still in place. Currently, those living in Greece are only able to withdraw a total of 420 euros in cash each day. Certain electronic transactions could have fewer restrictions, though.
The economy in Greece is stabilizing, especially after the country received its third bailout since 2010. They recently received the first wave of funds from this bailout and the money will be used to pay loans to the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
The National Confederation of Hellenic Commerce is the main organization that advocates for small to medium-sized businesses in Greece. Their website states that they represent, “Greek commerce on both domestic and international levels.” In addition to advocating for an easement on current baking restrictions, they also take on workplace issues such as gender equality. The website states, “It runs a Gender Equality Office which has developed a help-line to help female merchants and a platform for the exchange of information and good practice.” They are also concerned with issues such as parental rights.