Greek Shipowners Can’t Buy Fuel Due to Capital Controls

Capital controls introduced by the Greek government could have a ripple effect on Greek shipowners leaving their ships stranded in port as they are unable to buy fuel.

The estimate relates to up to a fifth of the country’s fleet, according to the Telegraph, which have been prevented from doing business outside the country due to the capital control implemented as the country had run out of Euros.

 “There is a problem in the industry because many companies cannot buy any oil,” a source at the Zouros Shipping Company in Piraeus told the UK newspapers. “Many ships are locked in harbours – maybe as many as 20pc – and are not allowed to make payments outside the country because of capital controls.”

The effect of the capital controls is the biggest on smaller companies dependent on local banking system, Zouros said, whereas for bigger players with accounts outside Greece it is business as usual.

According to an update from Inchcape Shipping Services (ISS) on port operations in Greece and local conditions to 7 July 2015, there were no issues or changes of itinerary because of capital controls with respect to cruises.

Piraeus container terminal has not reported operational delays in port operations since capital controls were enforced and the only vessel supply operation presently affected is delivery of ‘Cash to Master’ for any vessel type.

ISS said that foreign bank card holders (tourist and cruise passengers) could use ATMs as normal. However, remittances outside Greece from a Greek bank account are still not possible.

As informed, there have been no incidents to date affecting port safety and/or security.

ISS said that imports are expected to be affected in the near future but initially only for local importers that do not have a non-Greek bank account.

World Maritime News Staff

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