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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 11-04-07

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Gross final energy consumption from Renewable Energy Sources (RES) in Cyprus reached 4.8% in 2010, a Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism official said, expressing optimism that Cyprus will meet its target set out in its national action plan for 13% share of energy from RES, in the framework of the EU 2020 targets.

    For this reason, Cyprus established a grants scheme, which in the period of 2005-2010 has approved grants for energy conservation and the utilization of RES totaling 67.09 million euro, whereas the Cyprus Council of Ministers has approved the new Grants Scheme for 2011.

    ``We have covered the 2010 target in almost all categories and in some fields we have exceeded our target,`` Ioannis Chryssis a Ministry of Commerce`s official said in an interview with CNA.

    ``The implementation of the targets set by Cyprus` energy policy began to materialise and we are certain that with the strict compliance with the plan`s provisions we will achieve our targets,`` he added.

    According to the plan, the 13% target would be reached if the RES share in electricity generation should reach 16%, which according to Chryssis corresponds to 300 Megawatt (Mw) from wind systems, 192 Mw from solar systems, 75 Mw from solar thermal systems and 17 Mw from biomass.

    Furthermore, the plan stipulates that RES contribution in the field of heating and cooling must reach 23.5%, whereas the RES share in road transport is set at 10%.

    According to Department of Energy figures for 2009, the average growth rate for energy consumption in Cyprus reached 2.6%, whereas electricity consumption average growth rate reached 6.8%. The cost of energy import reached a hefty 970 million euro representing 14% of the island`s total imports cost.

    Cyprus has put in place a legal framework, which provides for a Special Fund for Energy Conservation and the utilization of Renewable Energy Sources, the income of which comes from the imposition of an energy tax of 0.0022 euro for every kilowatt-hour (kWh) in electricity consumption.

    Chryssis said that for 2011 the Special Funds` budget exceeds 25.5 million euro. A total of 3.12 million will be granted for applications that entered the scheme from previous years, 5.72 million for applications for heating and cooling from RES and 17 million for electricity generation from RES.

    Concerning today`s RES development in Cyprus, Chryssis said that there was a significant increase of the installed capacity of solar systems to 6.6 megawatt, compared to 2009 when the installed solar power, both of the systems connected to the island`s grid and of the autonomous systems was only 3.5 megawatt.

    According to Chryssis, this increase was boosted by the completion of the installation of 1.1 megawatt solar power systems at the rooftops of public buildings, schools and military camps, in a project funded by the EU structural funds and Cyprus. Additionally 2010 saw the completion of four solar power parks of a total capacity of 600 kilowatt.

    Furthermore, two new applications were lodged in December 2010 for solar-thermal power stations of 25 megawatt total capacity, which according to their implementation timeframe would be operational by the end of 2014.

    Chryssis said that ``2010 was the year with the biggest developments concerning the promotion of wind energy``, as Cyprus` first wind park with a total capacity of 82 megawatt began operation, whereas contracts were signed for the construction of an additional five wind parks with a total capacity of 75.5 megawatt.

    Chryssis finally noted that a total of 11 units for electricity generation from biomass with a total capacity of 7.9 megawatt are already operational, whereas biomass systems of 1.25 megawatt have entered the grants scheme and are expected to be completed within the next 18 months.


    Hundreds of Turkish Cypriots demonstrated on Thursday in the surrounding area of the so called parliament and the illegal Turkish embassy in the north occupied Nicosia, protesting against Turkeys economic policy towards the occupied areas of Cyprus and the so called government.

    This was the third demonstration organized by the Turkish Cypriot Trade Union platform. The previous two rallies took place on January 28th and March 2nd. The so-called parliamentary parties did not participate in todays demonstration, in which tension and confrontations with the police prevailed, leading to the arrest of one person.

    Members of the illegal police took extremely strictly measures by closing with iron railings the road in front of the so-called parliament and the illegal Turkish embassy. Three hundred policemen, according to estimation, guarded the participants in the rally.

    The demonstration began at 11am with the participants holding placards, with slogans against the Turkish government, the so-called government and in favor of a solution of the Cyprus problem. One of the demands put forward by the Platform is the withdrawal of the financial measures imposed by Turkey.


    Architectural heritage of the buffer zone in the walled city of Nicosia was among the 27 winners of the 2011 European Union Prize for Cultural Heritage, Europa Nostra Awards, announced on Thursday in Brussels.

    According to Europa Nostras official website, the project was unanimously acclaimed by the jury as a fine and comprehensive study of all the buildings within the UN protected buffer zone of Nicosia, originally the heart of this walled city.

    The study of the architectural heritage of the buffer zone was implemented within the framework of the bi-communal Nicosia Master Plan Project (NMP), which was launched in 1980 as a collaboration between the two communities in Cyprus, for the development of Nicosia as a whole and the revitalization of the walled city.

    The Buffer Zone, separating the two communities in Cyprus, also called The Green Line was established in 1964 within the Resolution 186, approved by the UNSC following the outbreak of inter-communal violence. The zone extends approximately 180 kilometers across the island. In some places in old Nicosia, it is only a few meters wide. In other places, it is a few kilometers wide. The Buffer Zone was perpetuated by the 1974 Turkish invasion whish resulted in the occupation of 37% of the islands territory.


    Inflation in Cyprus reached 2.8% in March 2011 compared to 2.4% in the previous year.

    According to an official press release, the Consumer Price Index for March 2011 increased by 1,12 units or 0.98% to 115,12 units compared to 114,00 in February 2011.

    According to Cyprus Statistical Service, this is mainly due to increases in the prices of certain clothing items, petroleum products, water rates, certain fresh fruit and electricity. Decreases have been recorded in the prices of certain fresh vegetables.

    The rate of increase of the Index, and therefore the rate of inflation, for March 2011 amounted to 2.8% remaining at the same level as in February 2011 and higher than the inflation rate of 2.4% recorded in March 2010.

    For the period January-March 2011, the CPI recorded also an increase of 2.8% compared to the corresponding period of 2010.

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