By virtue of a bill introduced in Parliament for endorsement a new system of registration of shares is established. The major changes introduced by the bill are as follows:

- existing shares are replaced by registration in the electronic or other records of the Depository Company (DC). Such shares are registered in the records of the DC without a serial number and in case of cancellation of a corporation from the register of the Athens Stock Exchange (ASE) the claim of the shareholder for the issuance of share title revives.

- the procedure for the conversion of existing shares embodied in 'material' titles into 'immaterial' ones and the pertinent details are laid down in the bill.

- an eighteen month time limit commencing from the entry into force of the new provisions is provided for the completion of the conversion procedure for shares listed on the ASE; on the other hand, a one year limit is set out for company shares which will be listed on the ASE up to the entry into force of the new law.

- a series of safeguards is laid down for the conversion of shares which have become invalid due to theft, loss or destruction as well as in cases of transfer due to inheritance or legacy.

- the procedures for the sales of shares which have not been delivered to the DC, following the expiry of the conversion time limit are specified, whereas the transactions on 'immaterial' shares outside the AE is secured.

- the secrecy of registration in the records of the DT is established both for the 'immaterial' bearer and registered shares.

- the procedure for the negotiation of 'immaterial' shares as well as the role of the Capital Market Commission in the operation of the new system are defined.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.