Commerce Minister Antonis Paschalides said the government was ready and that all that remained was approval from Europe.
He said around 18 companies had been licensed to produce wind, solar, photovoltaic and biomass energies, although only five or six met all the requirements and were ready to get started as soon as the government got the go-ahead from Europe.
“We expect this to happen within the coming days. Only one form of energy (wind) might take longer,” he said.
Paschalides said the investors had been kept informed and everything was all set to get moving.
“The land has been bought and tested, they have ordered the generators and they are ready to start,” he said.
The minister said nuclear energy was not an option for Cyprus and that no one could force the island to invest in it.
“Yes, Europe a lot of countries are seriously discussing, promoting and encouraging nuclear energy because they have their own interests. They are producers and manufacturers of nuclear stations and want customers,” he said.
Paschalides said each country could choose its own way of producing energy.
“It must look at its own parameters and own geographical position, its sensitivities and the types of energy a country can have,” he said.
The minister said Cyprus had ruled out nuclear energy in favor for going ahead and encouraging renewable sources.
“Europe must help all countries especially like ours that are isolated and have the disadvantage of not being able to co-operate with other countries on the issue of energy. We are a small island on the edge of Europe, but there are other countries [like Cyprus] and [Europe] must support renewable energy and I believe Europe can and should do more,” said Paschalides.
Cyprus Mail, February 3, 2009