Cyprus has imposed temporary capital controls. This column sheds light on how temporary and how damaging they are likely to be, based on Iceland’s experience. The longer controls exist, the harder they are to abolish. Icelandic capital controls, which have been Û÷temporary’ for half a decade, deeply damage the economy by discouraging investment. We can only hope the authorities that created the chaos in the first place realise that temporary really needs to mean temporary.