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Statute of the Bank of Greece

The regime that governs the operation of the Bank of Greece is laid down in its Statute. The Statute of the Bank of Greece was ratified by Law 3424/7 December 1927 (Government Gazette A 298) ratifying the Legislative Decree of 10 November 1927 re: “Ratification of the agreement dated 27 October 1927, regarding the waiver by the National Bank of Greece of its privilege of issuing banknotes and the establishment of a new bank under the name "BANK OF GREECE", and the Statute of the Bank of Greece annexed thereto”. Article 1 paragraph (b) of the Legislative Decree of 10 November 1927 explicitly states that the provisions of the Statute have the force of law and, more specifically, the force of a superior law prevailing over any other provision of domestic law, given that the Statute of the Bank of Greece forms part of an international agreement ratified by law in accordance with Article 28 paragraph 1 of the Greek Constitution.

Since then, the Statute of the Bank of Greece has been repeatedly amended. The most important amendments were approved by the decisions of the General Meeting of Shareholders of the Bank of Greece on 22 December 1997 and 25 April 2000, ratified by Laws 2609/1998 and 2832/2000, respectively. By those amendments the operational framework of the central bank was modernised and brought in line with the provisions of the Treaty on European Union and the Statute of the European System of Central Banks.

Specifically, the Statute explicitly states that the Bank’s primary objective is to ensure price stability; lays down its main tasks; and safeguards the Bank' s independence from the government or any organisation and its accountability to Parliament. Moreover, the Statute provides that, as from the adoption of the euro as the currency of Greece, the Bank of Greece, in pursuing its primary objective and in exercising its main tasks, shall be an integral part of the European System of Central Banks and shall act in accordance with the guidelines and instructions of the European Central Bank.

Further important amendments to the Statute were decided on 24 April 2012 by the General Meeting of Shareholders and ratified by Law 4099/2012. These amendments represent a shift to more collegial decision-making and eliminate any potential (although in fact unlikely) conflicts of interest in the exercise of the Bank of Greece’s supervisory function.

Statute of the Bank of Greece (10th Edition)