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Bill to Remove Capital Controls Due Next Week

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Bill to Remove Capital Controls Due Next Week

Money - Icelandic Króna

Photo: Páll Kjartansson

A bill on the removal of capital controls will be put to Alþingi parliament next week, according to Minister of Finance Bjarni Benediktsson.

He says parliament will sit longer than usual into the summer for several reasons, including getting the bill through.

Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson told his Progressive Party conference in mid-April that a plan for removing currency controls would be pushed through before parliament’s summer break.

When asked about the bill at a cabinet meeting on Friday, Bjarni said the bill would not be introduced immediately:

“Not today, no […] hopefully next week, I’m aiming for that,” he said.

When asked by RÚV what he thinks of the IMF’s declaration that Iceland’s strikes and labor market woes will impede the removal of capital controls, Bjarni said:

“What I take from the IMF’s words is that if the results of the contract negotiations lead to increased inflation, interest rates will have to rise and there will be pressure on the value of the króna; then it would be harder for us in the future to remove controls on the domestic market. Getting homes, the wider economy, the pension funds back onto the open currency market. That will be harder if we have created a situation which is pressurizing the króna.”

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