Economy near full recovery
The economy of Cyprus is on the road towards full recovery, said Monday President Nicos Anastasiades, addressing the Cyprus Investors Summit, organized by the Cyprus Investment Promotion Agency (CIPA) in Limassol. At the same time he said that the delay in the review of Cyprus` economic adjustment programme was unnecessary.
“This meeting takes place at a turning point in the contemporary history of Cyprus, as it finds the country entering a new era. Today, I can state with confidence and certainty that we have turned the page. I can state with confidence and certainty that the economy is now on the road towards full recovery,” said the President.
As he explained, the financial sector had been restructured and recapitalised, mainly through big international investors, and the credit institutions had passed with success the European stress tests. He added that fiscal imbalances have been addressed and important structural reforms were well underway.
President Anastasiades pointed out that Cyprus was returning to the international markets, far earlier than anyone predicted and that the country’s international lenders had themselves recognized the continuous improvements and praised Cyprus on many occasions, while the international rating agencies had upgraded the economy and its outlook.
“Despite the unnecessary in my opinion delay in the conclusion of the 5th review of the economic adjustment programme due to the suspension of the application of the foreclosures law by the Parliament, we remain fully on track. We remain fully committed towards the implementation of the Programme”, he said.
Concerning the business environment in Cyprus, the President said that having maintained a stable and investment friendly tax regime, the government was determined to proceeding with the implementation of a series of bold structural reforms.
He added that the government’s objective was to boost the country’s global competitiveness and to make Cyprus one of the best places globally to start and to grow a business.
“We are placing emphasis on developing an attractive business environment that will enhance the competitiveness and performance of local and foreign investment. And to achieve this we have developed a comprehensive growth reform strategy which will curb bureaucracy and red tape, simplify procedures and regulation, and create a more enabling business and investment environment”, he said.
He also said that the government was working hard to further enhance the country’s reputation as a centre of excellence for international investment and business activities.
“Visible growth opportunities are evident in numerous economic sectors; shipping, tourism and the hospitality industry, land development, Information and Communication Technologies, education, health, professional services, renewable energy and of course hydrocarbons exploration and exploitation, to mention the most immediate ones”, he said.
Along these lines, he added, the procedures for the licensing and operation of an integrated casino resort, as well as the plans for the development of the Ayia Napa Marina were swiftly progressing and keen investor interest were already visible.
“My government has notably placed foreign investments at the top of its agenda from day one and in that respect has greatly facilitated them through measures that include, among others, reducing the time needed to issue permits, simplifying administrative procedures, licensing and encouraging the timely completion of projects”, said Anastasiades.
He noted that his government had embarked on an ambitious privatisation programme of state owned enterprises, to attract sound and sizeable foreign investments, while also allowing the organisations in question and their stakeholders to benefit in different ways.
It is through these reforms and a new mind-set, as the President said, that his government aims to create the solid foundations of a more multi-faceted and viable economic model for Cyprus.
Published on 10 February, 2015