Turkish Cypriots spent EUR 10.7 mln in Greek Cypriot shops in the first eight months of this year, according to the latest data from the credit card company JCC.
JCC recorded the amount spent in the south using credit and debit cards issued by Turkish banks. Since the number of Turkish tourists arriving in Larnaca is well under 100 each year and Turkish nationals are not allowed across the Green Line, it is beyond doubt that these figures relate to Turkish Cypriot spending.
In August alone, Turkish Cypriots spent EUR 1.3 mln, the same level as July.
The most popular item in the first eight months of the year continued to be supermarkets (reaching EUR 2.4 mln), followed by clothing (EUR 2.2 mln) and DIY (EUR 1.7 mln).
Greek Cypriots spent EUR 1.6 mln in Turkey excluding Attaleia (Antalya) in January-August.
Turkey is becoming a popular tourist destination with Greek Cypriots. Official data show that 1,319 returned from a trip to Turkey in 2007.
As for spending in the north, in the first eight months of the year JCC reported that EUR 4.5 mln was spent in the “Occupied Areas and Attaleia”, with only a tiny proportion of that likely to have been spent in Attaleia (Antalya).
Most spending by Greek Cypriots in the north was on entertainment (EUR 2.7 mln), reflecting the popularity of the casinos, which are banned in the south, while EUR 842,547 was spent on hotels.