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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 09-05-18

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Cypriot Minister of Finance Charilaos Stavrakis has said that foreign investors are impressed by the macroeconomic indicators of Cyprus` economy, and has expressed optimism that the aim for drawing one billion EUR from foreign investors in Europe and the USA will be met.

    Stavrakis was speaking after the Road Show of the Cypriot economy and banking system for investors, held in London to promote the issuing of four-year government bonds, with an aim to draw one billion EUR to refund the public debt, expiring in 2009.

    The Royal Bank of Scotland and French banks BNP Paribas and Societe Generale have been appointed coordinators of the issuing of the bonds, while the Bank of Cyprus and Popular Bank, as well as Greek Alpha Bank, have been appointed assistant coordinators.

    Following the Road Show, the Minister held meetings with foreign investors. Stavrakis will also present the Cypriot economy to foreign investors in Paris, Frankfurt and Amsterdam or Milano. The tenders will close on May 27.

    ``We have highlighted the very positive elements of the Cypriot economy and the banking system, and we are optimistic that we will manage to successfully draw this huge capital, despite the fact that the conditions are not the most favourable in the market, due to the global financial crisis,`` Stavrakis said.

    He added that the amount hoped for would be used to implement the government`s development plan for the next four years, in order to maintain high growth rates and endow the Social Insurance Fund, with an aim to safeguard pensions with an initial contribution of 200 million EUR.

    Asked why he was optimistic that foreign banks would invest in the Cypriot economy, Stavrakis said ``the foreign investors are impressed by the macroeconomic indicators of our economy, the fact that we will be the only country in Europe with a positive growth rate of the economy, the growth rate of 1.6% for the first quarter was much higher than anyone expected, inflation is dropping, the excellent performance of the public debt and the fact that we have a banking system that is robust and did not need supporting by the government.``

    Presenting the economy to foreign investors, Stavrakis focused on the economy`s indices, the fiscal policy, the well-regulated banking system and the management of public debt.

    He referred to the latest projections of the International Monetary Fund and the European Commission for a positive growth rate in 2009, reaching 0.3%, and noted that Cyprus was the only European country to record a positive growth rate.

    Stavrakis pointed out that Cyprus is a member of the Eurozone since 2008, has strong public finances, a higher growth rate than the European average, a high per capita GDP over 90% of the EU average and the highest among the 12 new members of the EU, a strong regulative framework, low unemployment and inflation, a modern taxation system and a small public deficit.

    He specifically said that unemployment was low with full-employment conditions, while inflation dropped below 1% during the first quarter of 2009 and is expected to be between 1% and 1.5% for 2009.

    Concerning the aim of Cyprus to become a financial centre, Stavrakis said Cyprus has a modern and simple taxation system, based on low tax coefficients, the lowest in Europe, has signed agreements to avoid double taxation with 40 countries, and boasts a strong and independent banking system.

    Stavrakis also pointed out that the Cypriot banks have not invested in ``toxic`` products.


    Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou will be departing for Washington, USA, on Tuesday, to attend and address the 25th Annual Cyprus and Hellenic Leadership Conference.

    The Conference will be hosted in Washington by the International Coordinating Committee Justice for Cyprus (PSEKA) from May 20 to 22.

    According to the draft agenda, on Wednesday there will be a briefing session and opening remarks, followed by a State Department meeting and a welcoming buffet reception hosted by the Ambassador of Cyprus.

    On Thursday, there will be breakfast and meetings with key Members of Congress, followed by lunch and meetings with key US Senators.

    On Friday, there will be a presentation and panel discussion, followed by a closing strategy session.


    Cyprus and Greece have signed a new agreement for cooperation in sports, which covers education, common research, a common line in European bodies, cooperation of national programmes, the specialised training of high performance athletes, and the participation of Cypriot and Greek athletes in games organised in either country.

    The protocol to the interstate agreement was signed during a special ceremony in Nicosia by Chairman of the Cyprus Sports Organisation Nicos Kartakoullis and Greek Deputy Minister of Culture, in charge of sports issues, Yiannis Ioannides.

    Speaking after the ceremony, Kartakoullis said the new agreement, which upgrades the previous one, has given emphasis on training sports officers, noting that the interstate agreement has greatly contributed to the development of sports in Cyprus, especially after the 1974 Turkish invasion of the island.

    Ioannides noted that Cyprus is a significant partner and valuable friend, adding that cooperation between the two countries extends to all sectors, including sports.

    He added that through the agreement, as well as the protocol, which is updated annually, the two countries aspire to continuously improve and upgrade bilateral cooperation in the sector of sports, noting that the benefits contribute to the further development of sports activities and the highlighting of the higher values of sports, which both countries cultivate and promote.

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