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Cyprus Mail: Press Review in English, 99-09-18

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From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

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Saturday, September 18, 1999


Job Centre



/ Louis share furore dominates front pages



_ reported yesterday that Finance Minister Takis Klerides had suggested that a limit be set on the amount of shares allowed to be purchased by civil servants.

The paper said that Klerides made the move following a furore over public figures making private placement purchases of Louis shares.

According to Phileleftheros, the law gives public servants the right to purchase "a number of shares which do not exceed the percentage of share capital defined by the Finance Minister."

Klerides told the paper that this percentage would be defined in collaboration with the Attorney-general.


_ also reported that Louis executive George Michaelides had said that a list of the people who had purchased shares by private placement would not be published as he considered such an action to be unethical.

Politis, meanwhile, printed a list of the private placement purchasers.

The paper's front page headline screamed: "We reveal all the names, the private list of Louis shareholders."


_ named government officials, political party members and media figures, saying that the issue was "snowballing day by day."

The paper said that added to the names already known were Customs head Andis Tryphonides, head of finance and budgeting at the Finance Ministry Christos Patsalides, Central Bank executives Takis Kanaris and Spyros Stavrou, and director of the planning office Panicos Pouros.


_ said that these names had been added to the list which also included former Communications minister Leontios Ierodiaconou, Akel deputy Takis Hadgigeorgiou, the director-generals of the Ministry of Communications and Works Vassos Pyrgos and Michael Erotokritou, director-general of the House Costakis Christoforou and head of the Central Bank Afxentis Afxentiou.


_ reported that Afxentiou would be resigning his position as governor of the Central Bank if it was decided he had committed an unethical action.

The paper said Afxentiou had confirmed that he had purchased Louis Cruise line shares by private placement.


_ continued that Afxentiou had also admitted to purchasing shares in about 15 other companies by private placements "without realising."


_ said that several other companies had also issued private placement shares.

The paper said that these included the 'Sharelink' brokerage, which, Simerini said, issued almost 100 per cent of its shares using this method.

Louis, according to the paper, issued jut over half its shares by private placement.

The paper said that main Sharelink shareholders included government officials, and quoted Stock Exchange circles as questioning why only the list of Louis private placement purchasers was being investigated.


_ also reported that the list of Louis shareholders "was growing in volume."

The paper said that while the Stock Exchange was due to reopen on September 23, brokers and shareholders were still concerned about the back-log of work responsible for the market's three week closure.

The paper said that Exchange circles felt it was unlikely the work would be completed on time.


_ did not give front page attention to the Louis shares turmoil but announced that the five service taxi companies would merger into one company.

The paper expressed concern that taxi drivers at the five companies, Kyriakos, Karydas, Acropolis, Kypros and Makris, would have worse working conditions and fewer rights following the change.

© Copyright Cyprus Mail 1999

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