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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 08-01-17

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    Cypriot Foreign Minister Erato Kozakou - Marcoullis underscored the importance of organising the 5th Informal Meeting of the Foreign Ministers of ten European Union Mediterranean countries in Cyprus, which begins tonight in the coastal town of Paphos.

    In statements to CNA Marcoullis, who will chair the meeting, said that apart from the important issues to be discussed during the two-day deliberations in Paphos, EU Foreign Ministers will be briefed about the Cyprus issue and get an insight into the situation in Cyprus, divided since the 1974 Turkish invasion.

    Foreign Ministers of Cyprus, Slovenia, Greece, Malta, Romania, Bulgaria, France, Spain, Italy and Portugal will discuss regional and international issues. The agenda includes items such as the Middle East process, migration, natural disaster response mechanism, Kosovo and the establishment of a Mediterranean Union.

    Answering questions on Kosovo, Marcoullis said that the Paphos meeting will not overcome the deadlock.

    ĢI do not believe that there will be any development regarding Kosovo nor that the Paphos meeting will break the deadlock. But it will provide one more chance to discuss the issue and its parameters, she noted.

    On the sidelines of the meeting Marcoullis will have bilateral meetings with her counterparts. Today she will hold two separate bilateral meetings, one with her Italian counterpart Massimo D` Alema and one with the Foreign Minister of Romania Adrian Cioroianu.

    Although no official decisions will be taken during the two day-meeting, Marcoulis said that Foreign Ministers will exchange views on issues which concern the EU Mediterranean countries and achieve closer cooperation on dealing with those problems. The meeting in Paphos is organised on an initiative by the Foreign Ministry of the Republic of Cyprus.

    Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos will welcome the Foreign Ministers at an evening reception, followed by a working dinner during which the Ministers will discuss the peace process in the Middle East.

    Tomorrow, they will participate in the plenary session which will deal with illegal immigration, the natural disaster response mechanism and Kosovo.

    A meeting with the press will take place at midday, followed by a working lunch during which the FMs will discuss the creation of a Mediterranean Union.

    This informal meeting is convened twice a year, at the beginning of each EU Presidency. The purpose is to coordinate and strengthen cooperation among the Mediterranean countries, members of the EU.


    Cyprus, as an EU member state and having harmonised its legal framework with the European directives, provides a stable business environment for potential investors, President Tassos Papadopoulos has said, adding that the Government proposes the establishment of the Energy Centre, which together with the continuing promotion of the use of Renewable Energy Sources, as well as any prospective hydrocarbon resources in the offshore sector of the island, constitute the islands main long-term energy potential.

    In his address at the event organized by the Nicosia Chamber of Commerce and Industry on the occasion of the visit of the General Secretary of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) Abdalla Salem El-Badri, he noted, that the island due to its geographical position, could become an energy hub for the safe storage and transit of fuels at its Energy Centre.

    The energy sector of Cyprus, said President Papadopoulos constitutes a basic element of the countrys development, and the Governments priority is to ensure an adequate, secure, competitive and sustainable energy supply. He added that this is achieved by the diversification of energy sources, by promoting the energy conservation in the context of Renewable Energy Sources development, and sustainable energy production and use.

    Noting that these priorities are in line with European Union directives and provide stability for this important sector he added: The Government plans the establishment of an integrated Energy Centre, which will include facilities for the importation, storage and vaporisation of liquefied natural gas (LNG), as well as various petroleum fuels (oil terminal). The natural gas, being a more efficient and environmentally friendlier energy source, will be used mainly in the generation of electricity and will have a positive effect on the national economy. In addition, the oil terminal will improve the competitiveness and efficiency of the Cypriot oil industry through its modernization, Papadopoulos said.

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