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May 23 (Bloomberg) -- Iceland’s central bank offered to repurchase 15 billion kronur ($128 million) of its currency held abroad in exchange for euros as it loosens capital controls.

“The auction is an element in the removal of restrictions on movement of capital as set forth in the central bank’s capital account liberalization strategy” published March 25, the Reykjavik-based bank said in an e-mailed statement. Offers to take part shall be submitted by June 7, the bank said.

Iceland has relied on capital controls to prevent a selloff of the krona since the 2008 collapse of its biggest banks.

Offshore kronur are estimated at 400 billion kronur to 500 billion kronur, or about 25 percent of Iceland’s economy, the bank said in March. Once the central bank has completed the first phase, it will focus on onshore krona, it said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Omar Valdimarsson in London at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Jonas Bergman at

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