* Deposits hit lowest level since October 2001
* Bank of Greece chief urges conclusion of bailout review
* Gap between loans and deposits forces further borrowing
(Adds central banker, background)
ATHENS, March 27 Greek private sector bank
deposits declined in February for the third month in a row,
central bank data showed on Monday, as worries over the
country's drawn out bailout review put them at their lowest
level in nearly 16 years.
Business and household deposits fell to 119.07 billion euros
($129.35 billion), the lowest amount since October 2001, from
119.75 billion in January, when they decreased by 1.63 billion.
Bank of Greece Chief Yannis Stournaras urged the government
to wrap up a bailout review that has dragged on for months to
put an end to uncertainty that is unnerving investors.
"We already have the first negative impacts on the economy.
If we want to attain the targets we must conclude (the review)
as soon as possible," Stournaras told financial website
capital.gr on Monday.
The Bank of Greece said there was an outflow of 637 million
euros in household deposits in February and a 113 million euro
drop in corporate deposits.
Greek banks have seen small deposit inflows after the
country clinched a third bailout in the summer of 2015 to stay
in the euro zone.
After that bailout, Athens eased capital restrictions
following progress on bailout-mandated reforms which led to
improved confidence in the banking system.
As part of the relaxation of controls, "mattress" cash
returned to banks are not subject to the restrictions, meaning
amounts deposited can be fully withdrawn.
For older deposits the 420 euro weekly limit on cash
withdrawals remains in force.
But the gap between outstanding loans and deposits has
forced private sector banks to rely on borrowing from the
European Central Bank (ECB) and the Bank of Greece to plug
Greece's banking sector saw a 42 billion euro deposit
outflow from December 2015 to July last year. Capital controls
imposed in June 2015 helped contain the flight but sharply
increased banks' dependence on emergency liquidity assistance
(ELA) from the Bank of Greece.
Last week the European Central Bank raised the cap on ELA
Greek banks can draw from the domestic central bank by 400
million euros to 46.6 billion euros, as a result of deposit
(Reporting by George Georgiopoulos; Editing by Julia Glover)