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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 08-06-17

Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <http://www.cyna.org.cy>


CONTENTS

  • [01] PASCOE - CYPRUS
  • [02] PRICES - MEASURES
  • [03] RUSSIA SEMINAR
  • [04] EUROSTAT - DEFICIT

  • [01] PASCOE - CYPRUS

    President of the Republic Demetris Christofias had the opportunity on Tuesday to reiterate to UN Undersecretary General Lynn Pascoe his commitment to continue to work for a Cyprus settlement with good will.

    Speaking after their meeting in Nicosia, Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou said President Christofias clarified that the aim should be a solution that will reunite the country on the basis of a bizonal bicommunal federation with political equality, as described in UN resolutions, with a single sovereignty, citizenship and international identity.

    Stephanou said these positions emanate from the positions agreed on with the Turkish Cypriot community and are provided for in UN resolutions, thus the two communities should be speaking the same language in the dialogue underway.

    ``Through the meeting, the President of the Republic had the opportunity to elaborate on these issues and have a fruitful dialogue with Mr. Pascoe regarding the current phase of the Cyprus problem and regarding the prospects for a settlement,`` Stephanou pointed out.

    Commenting on the fact that Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat has refused to attend a dinner in the presence of both President Christofias and Pascoe; Stephanou said President Christofias had said earlier that he would be attending the dinner if invited.

    ``Mr. Pascoe extended an invitation to him and he will be attending the dinner tonight,`` Stephanou said, adding that Talat should answer for himself.

    Stephanou said Talat had reacted to the memorandum of understanding signed between the Republic of Cyprus and the United Kingdom, which repeats what has been agreed on with the Turkish Cypriot community and the UN resolutions and decisions. He added that Talat was also displeased with the UN Secretary General`s recent report.

    Replying to questions, Stephanou said that ignoring or misinterpreting what has been agreed on, as well as the decisions and resolutions, reduces the possibilities of finding a solution.

    ``That is why our side insists so much on what has been agreed and the UN decisions and resolutions,`` he pointed out.

    To other questions, the Spokesman said the Greek Cypriot side`s effort was to be ``very specific in our statements, insisting on some issues that have to do with matters of principle regarding the Cyprus problem, and that is why we insist on the negotiating basis and the same language, regarding the negotiating basis and the aim of achieving a settlement that will reunite the country.``

    Stephanou pointed out that Pascoe had come to Cyprus to help the two communities move forward in their dialogue.

    ``We believe that the positions we are submitting, which are above all UN positions and positions which the two communities have agreed on in the past, are totally realistic. If the positions of the other side dismiss what we have agreed on and what the UN supports, then we reduce the prospects of reaching a Cyprus settlement,`` he added.

    Asked if the leaders of the two communities would be entering direct negotiations later this year, Stephanou said this was up to the leaders themselves, adding that they will be meeting in the second half of June to review progress in the working groups and technical committees.

    Invited to say if Pascoe had presented any ideas regarding the dialogue underway, Stephanou said he had not, adding that there had been an exchange of views.

    ``The initiative is in the hands of the two communities. The UN has come to help this process,`` he concluded.

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third.

    [02] PRICES - MEASURES

    A series of measures to reduce to the greatest extent possible the rate of increase in prices of a series of products was decided on during a broad meeting on Tuesday at the Ministry of Finance.

    The meeting was attended by Minister of Finance Charilaos Stavrakis, Minister of Labour and Social Insurance Soteroula Charalambous, Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism Antonis Paschalides, and representatives of employers` organisations and trade unions.

    Speaking after the meeting, Stavrakis said ``the Cypriot economy is doing well, the index and rate of economic growth is more than double of the rest of Europe, and there are conditions of full employment in Cyprus.``

    ``We have agreed on a series of measures to reduce to the greatest extent possible the rate of increase in prices,`` Stavrakis said, adding that the government will play its institutional role, while the businesspeople will do everything they can in order to keep prices as low as possible.``

    Stavrakis said that the Committee for the Protection of Competition was not operating to its full potential over the past few years and that the government has strengthened it by appointing five full-time members to its Board of Directors.

    [03] RUSSIA SEMINAR

    Representatives of 40 Cypriot and over 60 Russian companies were informed on the business opportunities and prospects of cooperation in Cyprus and Russia, during a seminar in Saint Petersburg, which reaffirmed the prospects for strengthening bilateral economic relations, as well as the advantages Cyprus has to offer in the financial sector.

    The seminar was organised by the Cypriot Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism along with the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) and the Cyprus-Russian Business Association.

    Chairman of the Cypriot Investment Promotion Agency and the Cyprus-Russian Business Association Phidias Pilides told CNA that a seminar to be held in Moscow on June 20 is expected to record similar success, noting that ``the Cypriot delegation is strong, with a high presence of banking, auditing, accounting and law offices, as well as a representation of the real estate, commercial and technological sectors.``

    Pilides pointed out that the Russians were mostly interested about how Cyprus has been affected by its accession to the EU and the adoption of the euro, as well as ``whether it will maintain the current taxation system, which is very favourable.``

    President of the National Committee of the World Chamber of Commerce Vasilis Rologis, who represented CCCI at the seminar, said the Saint Petersburg seminar was organised in the context of efforts to upgrade Cyprus as a financial centre in the Eastern Mediterranean, noting that it was the first time such an interest in Cyprus was shown by a large number of Russians.

    [04] EUROSTAT - DEFICIT

    Cyprus trade balance showed a 1.4 billion euro deficit in first quarter of 2008, according to the latest data released today by Eurostat.

    The value of Cyprus total exports reached 200 million euro recording an 8% increase compared to January March of 2007. Imports increased by 21% and hit 1.7 billion euro.

    During the same period, the largest surplus was observed in Germany (+50%) followed by the Netherlands (+10.9 bln), while the United Kingdom presented the largest deficit with 34 bln euro. Greece registered the fourth largest deficit in EU27 (9 bln). Greeccs total exports dropped by 11% to 3.9 billion euro, while imports were reduced to 12.9 bln, registering a fall of 8%.

    Eurostat also released today its first estimate for the euro area trade balance with the rest of the world in April 2008. According to Eurostats estimation, the surplus reached 2.3 billion euro compared with 2 bln in April 2007.


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