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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 10-12-16

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    The state budget for 2011 was adopted by majority by the plenary of the House of Representatives on Thursday, with proposed expenditure having been slashed by about 40 million EUR with various amendments.

    The budget that had been brought before the House provided for revenue, excluding loans, of about 5 billion and 977 million EUR during 2010, with a projected increase in revenue by 4.7% in 2011, while the expected increase for 2010 is 7.1%.

    The total projected expenditure in the state budget for 2011, excluding the payment debts, reached 6 billion and 690 million EUR, up by 1.1% compared to the projected expenditure for 2010 of 7 billion and 936 million EUR.


    The heads of state and government of the 27 EU countries began their meeting in Brussels focusing on plans to establish a permanent mechanism to safeguard the financial stability of the eurozone as a whole. Cyprus is represented at the Summit by President Demetris Christofias.

    The European Council will discuss a limited treaty amendment for a permanent mechanism to safeguard the financial stability of the euro area. The mechanism will replace the European Financial Stability Facility (EFSF) and the European Financial Stabilization Mechanism (EFSM) which will remain in force until June 2013. Activation of the permanent mechanism, in the event of a risk to the stability of the euro area, will require mutual agreement of the euro area member states.

    The treaty change would involve revising Article 136 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union by adding a paragraph under which member states whose currency is the euro may establish amongst themselves a stability mechanism to safeguard the stability of the euro area as a whole and stating that the granting of financial assistance under the mechanism will be made subject to strict conditionality.

    In his invitation letter to EU leaders, European Council President Herman Van Rompuy said that we need to reach an agreement on a draft decision at our meeting in order for procedures to be launched as fast as possible, both at the EU and national levels, so that this decision can enter into force on 1 January 2013.


    Member of the US House of Representatives Ileana Ros-Lehtinen has urged Turkey to withdraw its occupation troops from Cyprus. The Congresswoman, member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs, has met the Ambassador of Turkey to the United States, Namik Tan, with whom she held a ``frank discussion about some troubling Turkish policies``.

    According to a press release, she expressed to the Ambassador her deep concern over Turkey`s position on the Cyprus issue.

    ``I told the Ambassador I am deeply concerned about Turkeys position on the conflict in Cyprus, which has divided that country for almost four decades``, she said after the meeting.


    The Cyprus Hotel Association (CHA) has expressed optimism over tourist prospects for 2011. Haris Loizides, President of CHA, has appealed to the government to revise its decision not to extend the measures on tourism which expire at the end of the year, as a ``basic precondition`` to keep tourism on an upward course in 2011.

    Addressing the Association`s extraordinary General Assembly, Loizides reviewed 2010 as a two-faced season; the start of the season with adverse prospects, the subsequent losses in tourist arrivals in the first half of the year and the positive results in terms of arrivals and revenue at the year`s end.

    According to Cyprus` Statistical Service, tourist arrivals in Cyprus rose 1.8 per cent in the first 11 months of 2010. Tourist arrivals have been following an upward trend in the second half of the year after a 10.9% plunge in 2009.

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