11:27 GMT03 March 2021
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    Greece will exceed its expenses on the migration crisis due to the fact that Greece has to accommodate a large number of refugees, according to Bank of Greece governor Yannis Stournaras.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Greece's expenses related to the migration crisis are expected to exceed the previously announced amount of 600 million euros ($670 million) due to the increasing number of refugees who are forced to remain in the country, Bank of Greece governor Yannis Stournaras said Sunday.

    More than 41,000 refugees are currently staying in Greece, as their initial intention to move further to Europe was blocked due to the closure of the Balkan route. The Bank of Greece has estimated that the migration crisis in the country would cost 0.3 percent of GDP amounting to 600 million euro.

    "This estimate was made on the presumption that Greece was only a transit country, but the forecast is due to be recalculated due to the fact that we have to accommodate a large number of refugees," Stournaras told the Italian Il Sole 24 Ore business daily in an interview.

    Earlier in March, Turkey and the European Union reached an agreement to put an end to the Balkan route, used by migrants to travel through Greece and Macedonia to wealthier EU states.

    Undocumented migrants have been growing in numbers in Greece since February after European countries started adopting restrictive measures, such as daily limits on the number of people entering their territory, to curb the refugee influx.

    Some 880,000 migrants used the Balkan route in 2015 to enter the European Union and 128,000 migrants entered the bloc through the Balkans in the first two months of 2016, according to European Council President Donald Tusk.

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    Tags:
    refugees, migrant crisis, European Union, Yannis Stournaras, Greece
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