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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 11-12-23

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <http://www.cyna.org.cy>


CONTENTS

  • [01] Cyprus and Russia sign loan agreement
  • [02] House President: international community must not tolerate Turkeys

    crimes

  • [03] Denmark: we aim to help resolve the EU crisis

  • [01] Cyprus and Russia sign loan agreement

    Nicosia and Moscow have signed a multi million loan agreement, and its first installment will be paid by the end of the year.

    Minister of Finance Kikis Kazamias and Deputy Finance Minister of the Russian Federation Sergey Storchak concluded on Thursday, in Moscow, the official signing of the bilateral loan agreement of 2,5 billion euro between the governments of the Republic of Cyprus and the Russian Federation.

    According to an official announcement, the first loan disbursement will be executed by 31st December, 2011.

    Amid the continuing financial crisis and the weak growth of the Cypriot economy, projected at a mere 0.2% GDP in 2012, the government introduced a series of austerity measures that would enable Cyprus to meet its medium term commitments to the EU and particularly for a budget deficit of 2.8 GDP in 2012 and a zero deficit by 2014.

    The House of Representatives approved on December 14, a new set of austerity measures, aiming at further fiscal consolidation.

    On December 16, the House approved, by majority vote, the state budget for 2012. According to preliminary estimates by the MPs, the total amount of savings -including savings of 148 million euro agreed with the Ministry of Finance from cuts on the Cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) - are estimated to reach 260 million euro. Functional expenses, which are decreased by 8%, reach 1,6 billion euro.

    Cuts from functional expenses exclude the contribution to the Social Insurance Fund, the contribution to the European Commission and other international organizations, loan payments, costs associated with income (tax refunds) and expenditure on social benefits.

    Grants to semi-governmental organizations were reduced by 8%.

    Funds for overtime work were cut by 50%. MPs voted that employees who work overtime are compensated based on the lower scale of their salary.

    The budget total revenue for 2012, excluding loans, was estimated - before amendments - at 7,740 million euro and total expenditure (including loan repayments) at 8,924 million euro, compared to 8,860 million euro budgeted for 2011.

    [02] House President: international community must not tolerate Turkeys crimes

    President of the House of Representatives Yiannakis Omirou has called on the international and the European community to understand that further tolerance of Turkeys crime in Cyprus encourages Ankaras intransigence and creates instability in the wider Eastern Mediterranean.

    In a Christmas message he read at the House, he said that thirty-seven years after Turkeys invasion of Cyprus in 1974, Cypriot Hellenism celebrates Christmas as the Turkish military occupation continues and the violation of human rights and fundamental freedoms goes on unabated.

    «Not only Turkey refuses to comply with the established principles of international law, but it also escalates its provocative attitude, threatening the Republic of Cyprus and questioning its sovereign rights within its Exclusive Economic Zone,`` he said.

    Omirou sent to the Cypriot people a message of perseverance, hope and determination to assert their inalienable rights.

    We will not consent to national suicide. We will not agree to the natural and national extinction of the Greeks of Cyprus. We insist on a just, functional, democratic solution which is based on international and European Law and secures the rights of all legal citizens of Cyprus, he stressed.

    He also referred to the consequences of the economic crisis that affects the local economy, calling for strong state supervision and regulatory mechanisms to shield the economy and create conditions of growth and social cohesion.

    [03] Denmark: we aim to help resolve the EU crisis

    The Danish EU Presidency, starting on January 1st 2012, wants to make a significant contribution in bringing the EU out of the current economic crisis, according to Danish Ambassador to Cyprus Kristen Geelan, who expressed at the same time confidence that the Cypriot EU Presidency, during the second half of 2012, will contribute to further enhancing EU cooperation.

    In an interview with CNA, Geelan said that her country may not be a Eurozone member, but is as concerned about the depth of the crisis in the Eurozone as the Euro members. The ambition of the Danish EU presidency is to help Europe to become economically sustainable, focusing on structural reforms, budget discipline and stronger regulation of the financial sector.

    Referring to Turkeys decision to freeze its relations with the EU, during the Cypriot EU Presidency, as Ankara does not recognize the Republic of Cyprus, Geelan recalled the conclusions of the latest European Council on this issue, noting that we are part of these conclusions.

    Whether Turkey becomes a member of the EU depends on the EU member states as well as Turkey itself. The negotiations are currently at a standstill, but things can change, she points out. The Danish government supports the aim of Turkish membership and wants to keep the track open for negotiations and contribute to a positive dialog with Turkey, she said.

    With regard to the Cyprus problem, the Danish Ambassador stressed that her country continues to support the ongoing direct negotiations under the auspices of the UN and continues to encourage the parties to engage constructively in finding a comprehensive solution as soon as possible to the benefit of both communities.

    The Danish Ambassador also underlined the potential that the Danish EU-Presidency offers in terms of enhancing the general knowledge of Denmark in Cyprus. I would welcome the possibility to share some of the experience that we have had and the knowledge gained with regards in particular to investing in energy efficiency, renewable energy, but perhaps also in areas of a social-economic nature, she said.

    Geelan said that the priorities that the Danish government has set for the EU Presidency are a responsible Europe, a dynamic Europe, a green Europe and a secure Europe.

    She pointed out the fact that the current seven-year EU budget is roughly around a trillion euro and stressed that our main focus it to try with that budget to confront the economic challenges and to make sure that a big chunk of this budget is channeled for the right policy areas to boost growth, jobs and innovation. The Danish EU-presidency hopes to contribute to making Europe more economically responsible. This implies a political willingness to implement and comply with new rules on economic governance. We see at the moment a Europe which is slowing down, we are losing competitiveness and we need to realize that this is really a crucial time for European cooperation, for European competitiveness.


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