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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 06-11-30

Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [02] OYS - CYPRUS
  • [03] ALMUNIA - EURO


    Cypriot Government Spokesman Christodoulos Pashiardis warned here today that Nicosia will not give its consent to the European Commission`s recommendation for Turkey`s refusal to expand its Customs Union to the Republic of Cyprus.

    Pashiardis said that the Cypriot government will intensify efforts for alterations to the Commission`s recommendation so that these represent an effective measure against Turkey.

    ``If we are not satisfied with the EU conclusions we will express our disagreement and the conclusions will not be valid,`` Pashiardis said, adding that ``In such a case, we will revert and exercise our right not to permit the opening of chapters of Turkey`s accession course.``

    The Cypriot spokesman said that the Commission`s recommendation is not binding, adding that ``the final decisions is up to the General Affairs Council and the EU Summit.``

    According to Pashiardis, the EU Foreign Affairs Council will be presented either with the Commission`s recommendations or with a altered recommendation or a new suggestion.

    ``In the time until the Foreign Affairs Council our side will intensify its efforts so that the final conclusions will force Turkey within a specific deadline to comply with its European obligations,`` he added.

    Pashiardis described the yesterday`s recommendations as ``flabby`` and pointed out that the decisions does not provide for an effective mechanism to monitor Anakara`s compliance with its assumed obligations,

    He described the yesterday`s recommendations as ``flabby`` and pointed out that the decisions does not provide for an effective mechanism to monitor Anakara`s compliance with its assumed obligations, adding that the partial suspension of Turkey accession negotiations is not satisfactory.

    ``The absence of a regular timeframe for the review of the fulfillment of the Turkish obligations towards the Republic of Cyprus in combination with the fact that Turkey`s course is continuing even with a slower pace will encourage Turkey`s intransigence and will act as a counter-motive for the full and immediate with the EU`s demands,`` said Pashiardis.

    Furthermore, Pashiardis described as ``unfortunate`` EU enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn remarks that Nicosia does not want tight timeframes because it asserted that with the Annan plan ``its back was against the wall``.

    ``Our reaction to tight timeframes relates with the dialogue for the solution of the Cyprus problem and the arbitration. In the case of Turkey, the timeframes are not related with dialogue, but exclusively concern the fulfillment of Ankara`s obligations towards the EU and the fulfillment of these obligations is not an issue of discussion but of an immediate and compelling necessity,`` he added.

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied its northern third.

    Turkey, a country aspiring to become an EU member state, does not recognise the Republic of Cyprus and refuses to implement the EU-Turkey Customs Union Protocol, by opening its ports and airports to Cypriot vessels and aircraft.

    [02] OYS - CYPRUS

    Greek Minister of Foreign Affairs Dora Bakoyiannis arrives in Cyprus tomorrow and will be received on the same day by President of the Republic Tassos Papadopoulos.

    During her stay on the island, Bakoyiannis will also meet with her Cypriot counterpart George Lillikas.

    Cypriot Government Spokesman Christodoulos Pashiardis said the Bakoyiannis` visit was programmed before yesterday`s publication of the European Commission`s recommendations on Turkey, adding that the visit is within the context of the constructive cooperation of the two governments.

    ``The Commission`s proposals will be discussed and evaluated,`` he added.

    A Greek Foreign Ministry issued today says ``the talks will focus on the recent regarding Turkey`s European course and the looming prospects.``

    [03] ALMUNIA - EURO

    European Union`s Economic and Monetary Affairs Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said here Thursday that Eurobarometer polls indicate that better public communication on the euro is necessary.

    Speaking on a conference entitled ``EMU Governance and Euro Changeover: Cyprus on the Path to the Adoption of the Euro``, Almunia said that 2007 will be a very crucial year regarding the preparation for joining the euro, adding that Cyprus has shown signifigant progress regarding the convergence efforts.

    ``Efforts in this country have shown results and I am pleased to note that progress towards nominal convergence in Cyprus is encouraging,`` he added.

    Almunia urged however Cyprus to continue on the route for budgetary consolidation. ``By taking prudent approach to fiscal policy, achieving public finances close to balance by the end the decade is a realistic goal for Cyprus,`` he added.

    The EU Commissioner said that Cyprus still needs to put in place a comprehensive strategy to reassure the public over possible price increases during the change over.

    He also referred to steps needed to secure sustainable public finances, making special reference to Cyprus retirement scheme.

    In his address, Cypriot President Tassos Papadopoulos said that said that Cyprus entry to the euro-area will be a success, pointing out that this development will facilitate the efforts for a real viable solution of the Cyprus problem.

    ``Our accession to the euro zone does not negatively affect the economy`s growth and does not entail weakening of the welfare state or limiting of the social benefits of the economically weaker classes,`` Papadopoulos said.

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