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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-05-12

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Cyprus supports the prospect of Turkeys full EU membership, Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou has said, but clarified that this support does not constitute a carte blanche.

    The Spokesman said Tuesday that Turkey has to meet its EU obligations and make the necessary steps towards solving the Cyprus problem.

    Invited to comment on statements made Monday by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicholas Sarkozy on Turkeys EU bid and asked whether those statements could harm the ongoing Cyprus talks, the Spokesman noted that in Europe there are different approaches as regards Turkeys European course.

    Our position, Stephanou said, ``is that we support the prospect of Turkeys full EU membership, but this is not a carte blanche.

    He explained that Turkey has to fulfill its EU obligations, meet the Copenhagen criteria and of course solve the Cyprus problem and fulfill the obligations it has undertaken through the additional protocol of the Ankara Agreement.

    The Spokesman said that in December the EU will assess Turkeys European course and pointed out that time until December is important.

    It is an important time until then, and this was stated by the Cypriot President at the meeting he held here with the Greek Prime Minister who paid an official visit. These issues, just because we want them to contribute to the efforts for a solution, shall be dealt with in full coordination and consultation with Greece and our European partners, so that to achieve our goals and protect the vital interests of our country, he concluded.

    UN-led peace talks are underway between the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot communities, with a view to finding a negotiated settlement that will reunite the country, divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion.


    Cyprus Finance Minister Charilaos Stavrakis announced Tuesday that the government will issue four-year bonds worth one billion euro to international markets, in a bid to refinance the public debt expiring in 2009.

    The issue of the bonds, the biggest in Cyprus` financial history, will be launched off the Republic`s Euro Medium Term Note (EMTN) programme and will cover 1.9 billion euro of public debt.

    Stavrakis said that ten presentations will take place in London, Paris, Frankfurt and Amsterdam or Milan in three days, targeting investment groups or individual investors, while orders for the bonds will close on May 27. The first presentation is scheduled for next Monday in London.

    He described the effort as difficult because of the ``current tough and unpredictable financial circumstances,`` recalling that both Britain and Germany bonds issue have failed to cover their issues in full.


    Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism Antonis Paschalides has outlined the advantages Cyprus offers to foreign businesspeople, during a seminar organised in Shanghai, for the promotion of the country as an international business centre.

    The seminar, under the auspices of the Cypriot Ministry, was organised by the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Shanghai`s International Chamber of Commerce.

    Addressing the seminar, Paschalides referred to Cyprus` advantages for international businesspeople, due to its proximity both to Europe and the Arab world, its stable banking system, its communications, its low tax regime and the traditional Cypriot hospitality.


    More than 150 exhibitors will be showcasing the products and services of 1000 companies from Cyprus and 20 foreign countries during the 34th Cyprus International Fair, which opens its gates on May 22nd and continues through to May 31st .

    The official state participations are those of Greece, Romania, Spain, Syria and the United States of America.

    Speaking during a press conference, Chairman of the Cyprus State Fairs Authority Loris Tryfon said the fair exhibits all sectors of business activities sectors that relate to the home and design, machinery and technology, services both public and private, home equipment, electrical appliances and many more.

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