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Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English, 01-09-21

Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

Friday, September 21, 2001


  • [01] Government demands correction from ex-CIA chief
  • [02] Budget aims to cut deficit
  • [03] Louis losses send market plunging down again
  • [04] Dairy companies lash out over milk dispute
  • [05] Gym teachers demand more jobs
  • [06] Nimda on the loose in Cyprus

  • [01] Government demands correction from ex-CIA chief

    By Jean Christou

    THE GOVERNMENT is not satisfied with clarifications give by former CIA director James Wolsey implicating Cyprus in the Osama bin Laden money trail and wants a corrective statement, Foreign Minster Yiannakis Cassoulides said yesterday.

    Wolsey told the Italian newspaper La Repubblicathat, as the world's "worst" tax haven, Cyprus should be barred from the European Union until it handed over information on Bin Laden's financial dealings in the country.

    Outraged, the Foreign Ministry on Wednesday summoned the ambassadors of the US and EU countries and called on them to reveal any information they had which could link Cyprus to such activities.

    " No country has in the past few years made any representations to Cyprus about accounts of companies connected to Bin Laden,"Cassoulides said.He said Cyprus had been given the all-clear in recent years by the a G8 task force, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the Oganisation for European Co-operation and Development (OECD).

    " The government has many commendations to present from numerous checks it has gone through from its co-operation with international organisations tasked with following these incidents,"Cassoulides said.

    " The OECD declared Cyprus not to be a tax haven, something that Mr Wolsey has alleged,"he said.

    The Minster hinted that there could be some vested interests at work trying to implicate Cyprus in support for terrorist activities.

    " Some people have a vested interest and we can't rule out that there could be people that are linked or possibly paid by Turkey,"he said, adding that the government expected the former CIA director to make a corrective statement.

    Cassoulides said the government was not satisfied by a new statement from Wolsey, which said his comments had been twisted by the press.

    " We expect him to make a correction,"the Foreign Minister said.

    A spokesman for the embassy said on Wednesday that Wolsey had retired from the CIA in 1995 and that his personal opinion did not represent the policies of the US government.

    Also yesterday, Finance Minster Takis Klerides met a delegation from the Council of Europe, which is in Cyprus on a scheduled three-day visit to discuss the fight against money laundering.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

    [02] Budget aims to cut deficit

    By Melina Demetriou

    THE FINANCE Ministry has examined ways of dealing with the effects of a possible global economic crisis on Cyprus, said minister Takis Klerides yesterday.

    Klerides was speaking after an emergency meeting of the Cabinet, which approved the state budget for 2002.

    The minister forecast a budget deficit for next year. There was also a budget deficit this year.

    Asked whether dramatic international developments after last weeks' terrorist attacks in the US could have an effect on the Cyprus economy, Klerides replied: " We had meetings and examined the consequences of a possible negative development. We looked at ways and measures of dealing with such a situation but come a world crisis, Cyprus would not escape the consequences that the other countries would suffer."

    The minister said that the 2002 state budget would be tabled before the Parliament's first plenary session after the summer holiday on October 4 for approval.

    Klerides said the state's net income in 2002 would be £2.075 billion and its expenditure £2.726.1 billion.

    The budget deficit is expected to be £655.6 million.

    The minister, however, appeared satisfied with " decreasing public deficit" .

    The public deficit will next year be 2.4 per cent of GNP, compared to 2.6 per cent this year, he said.

    Klerides said that the public deficit has been decreasing for the past three years.

    The minister described economic growth rates as satisfying.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

    [03] Louis losses send market plunging down again

    MARKET gains clocked up during trading on Tuesday and Wednesday were wiped off the books yesterday in a 5.99 per cent plunge which left the all-share index at a new low of 113.9 points.

    The FTSE/CySE blue chips index fared only slightly better, closing at 454 points following a 5.6 per cent drop. Total volume for the day stood at £5.1 million.

    Like on Monday, hotels and tourism were the worst hit after reports yesterday that tourism bosses were bracing for the effects of last week's terrorist attack in New York, which has plunged the global airline industry into a crisis.

    The tourism sector fell 8.1 per cent yesterday. The biggest losses were incurred by Golden Sun Holidays and Libra, which shed seven and four cents respectively to close at 56 and 57 cents.

    Louis Cruise Lines also came under heavy selling pressure, dropping three cents to 17 after 1.9 million shares were traded.

    Louis on Wednesday night announced half- pre-tax losses of£7.1 million.Net losses for the period were £799,000 compared to profits of£3.5 million in the same period last year.

    The company said revenue was particularly impacted at its Royal Olympic Cruises subsidiary by costs of a new vessel acquisition and tensions in the Middle East, a key market.

    "The results were very badly recieved," said analyst George Xydas at Severis and Athienitis.

    "The market moved higher in the past two days and many thought that it was stablising, so these results were really not what the market needed right now," he said.

    The banking sector dropped 5.43 per cent with Bank of Cyprus shedding six cents to £1.75 while Laiki fell 13 cents to £1.23 and Hellenic three cents to 72 cents. All three banks, along with Louis dominated the most active list.

    Only 11 stocks showed gains compared to 147 decliners and 68 which ended unchanged.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

    [04] Dairy companies lash out over milk dispute

    By Rita Kyriakides

    DAIRY producers are accusing the Milk Marketing Board of abusing its authority because of its controlling position of the market.

    The Association of Cheese makers, Pittas Dairy Industries Ltd, Christis Dairies Ltd, and Charalambides Dairies Ltd have individually filed complaints with the Committee for Protection of Competition against the Cyprus Milk Marketing Board for alleged abuse of authority.

    According to producers, the Board has breached competition law, modified last July in accordance with European standards, which allows the Committee for Protection of Competition to intervene and allows for a financial monopoly under certain circumstances.

    Protests from producers began when major drinks company Lanitis Bros Ltd. revealed plans to move into the milk industry, a move which sent shockwaves across the so-far regulated market.

    Established dairy companies Christis and Charalambides, which have dominated the market, reacted strongly after Lanitis obtained a licence back in May to bottle and distribute milk.

    Lanitis had planned to start operations this month but had to delay its launch until October when the Milk Marketing Board failed to supply it with milk, citing export demands by cheese producers.

    Now the existing producers are also asking for the Competition Committee to apply temporary measures to ensure companies within the dairy industry receive the amount of dairy products promised to them by the Board last November.

    The companies feel the Board has not taken into account the increase in demand for dairy products and says the industry will not be able to supply the necessary amount. The increases are mainly due to the increase in tourism and Halloumi exports as well as the introduction of Edam cheese as a primary product in Cyprus.

    The production of dairy products currently reaches around £126 million but should in fact be reaching at least £140 million, the complainants say.

    They say this has resulted in the Board failing to meet demand in milk, which could lead to the exporters losing faith in the industry and export markets.

    Producers are asking the Milk Marketing Board to increase production immediately and have asked the Commerce Ministry to prevent the introduction of new competition in the industry.

    They also want fewer cows to be slaughtered until the end of November so milk production can be increased.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

    [05] Gym teachers demand more jobs

    By Melina Demetriou

    UNEMPLOYED gymnastics teachers, members of the Cyprus Association of Physical Education and Sports Science, yesterday staged an angry demonstration outside Parliament asking for more positions in the field and warning that pupils did not exercise enough to be healthy.

    The Association, which represents gymnastic teachers, yesterday submitted a memorandum to House President Demetris Christofias asking for changes in the public education system to create positions for its 1,200 unemployed members.

    The Association's secretary-general, Demetris Petrides, charged that pupils did not exercise enough and warned that this could have a negative effect on their health.

    " The subject of gymnastics is now allocated much less teaching time than it was 10 years ago. Studies have shown that if pupils don't have more hours of gymnastics classes they will run a high risk of developing some health problem when they grow up,"Petrides said while protesting outside the House with about 60 unemployed members of the Association.

    Petrides claimed the Education Ministry was aware of the studies in question, but had completely ignored them.

    The Association yesterday submitted a memorandum to Christofias, asking that Parliament push for more hours of gymnastics, a development that would automatically create more positions in the field and provide jobs to unemployed teachers.

    " We have already voiced our demands to the House twice and we got nothing but promises. The House did nothing but table the matter before the Education Ministry's special committee for teachers but there has been no development so far,"Petrides said.

    The Association would stage more demonstrations in support of its unemployed members and " step up action"if necessary, said its chairman.

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

    [06] Nimda on the loose in Cyprus

    By Rita Kyriakides

    AT LEAST three companies in Cyprus have been hit by the latest computer virus, with many others scrambling to take preventive measures to protect themselves.

    The 'Nimda' worm, which hit the Internet on Tuesday, is said to be more virulent than virus such as Melissa or Code Red, according to anti-virus vendors.

    A local computer expert told the Cyprus Mailthat the main reason viruses were spread so easily was because people did not have anti virus software installed or did not keep their virus lists updated.

    He also said there was still an outbreak of the earlier Sircam virus still affecting companies in Cyprus.

    According to another computer technician, who wished to remain anonymous, the virus appears to cause damage to Microsoft Office programs and uses Microsoft Outlook and Outlook Express to spread itself.

    He said three of the companies he had been servicing had been hit by the virus.

    Nimda uses every trick in the book to spread, say virus experts, including chat programs, such as IRC, and can even download itself through a browser from infected Web servers. If it hits a networked system, it spreads through the network like wildfire.

    Jack Clark, European product manager of the anti-virus software provider McAfee, said that in terms of traffic Nimda is one of the worst viruses ever seen and is spreading so fast that it is impossible to keep count.

    Nimda (Admin spelt backwards) is known to affect all Window systems including Windows 98, 2000, Millennium and NT. When it arrives in email, it appears as an attachment named readme.exe. This is the same name used by another current virus called W32/Apost-A, so anti virus firms say many people should already be aware of attachments bearing that name.

    Computer experts recommend users install anti virus software and keep them updated as the majority of them have an antidote to most viruses within a few hours of an outbreak.

    For instructions on how to remove the virus go to .

    Copyright Cyprus Mail 2001

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