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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-04-06

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    The government has submitted to the European Commission its Stability Programme, which includes the basic targets to reduce the budget deficit to 6% in 2010 and below 3% by 2013.

    According to an official announcement issued on Tuesday by the Ministry of Finance, the Stability Programme was submitted to the Commission on Thursday, 1st of April, through the due process and it is already in the hands of the competent officials.

    As it is noted, the Stability Programme is a living document, which beyond its fundamental structure and measures, is open to change, adding that it is imperative to continue the dialogue both with parties and the social partners as well as the European Commission.

    The Ministrys announcement points out that the government remains committed to the efforts to reach consensus solutions on the economy in order to address the chronic structural problems to help economic recovery.

    Therefore, after tomorrow`s meeting between the Finance Minister and the leaders and representatives of all parliamentary parties, meetings with all social partners and other organized groups will follow in the next days in the context of the dialogue and discussions that have been going on for some time now, the announcement concludes.

    The four main targets of the Stability Programme relate to tax evasion, cutting down operational costs and non productive expenses in the civil service, boosting development and consolidating a more effective social state.

    In his remarks last week, the Finance Minister Charilaos Stavrakis expressed hope that the main bulk of the Programme will satisfy the Commission, noting though that there are always recommendations and amendments suggested by Brussels.


    The Council of Ministers has decided to proceed with cutbacks on operational expenses of the public sector, reaching 150 million euro.

    The Cabinet convened during an extraordinary meeting under President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias and discussed about the reduction of operational expenses in addition to the reduction foreseen in the state budget of 2010, on the basis of a plan, prepared by the Ministry of Finance.

    Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou told reporters after the meeting that until the end of 2011, 150 million euro will be saved.

    We decided further reductions of operational expenses of 150 million euro until 2011. For 2010 we decided to cut operational expenses by 60 million euro, and by 90 million euro in 2011. So, in total, 150 million euro in two years, he said.


    The National Council will be convening on Wednesday, under President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias, to evaluate the course of direct negotiations to solve the Cyprus problem.

    It will also discuss preparations in view of the forthcoming visit to Cyprus by Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou, scheduled for April 12.

    The National Council will discuss and evaluate, as always, the course of the negotiations, taking into consideration that Greek Premier will be visiting Cyprus a few days afterwards and will meet the President of the Republic and party leaders, Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou said last week after a Cabinet meeting.

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