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Cyprus PIO: News Update in English, 01-10-05

Cyprus Press and Information Office: News Updates in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>

Friday, 5 October 2001


CONTENTS

  • [01] Speech by the Finance Minister to the House of Parliament on the occasion of the discussion of the Budget for the year 2002
  • [02] Statements following meeting between British Foreign Secretary Mr Jack Straw and Greek Foreign Minister Mr George Papandreou, London, 4 October 2001
  • [03] Meeting between Euro MP and the High Commissioner of Cyprus to the UK
  • [04] Dr Lyssarides on a special mission to the Organisation of the Islamic Conference


[01] Speech by the Finance Minister to the House of Parliament on the occasion of the discussion of the Budget for the year 2002

The Minister of Finance, Mr Takis Klerides, in his speech today to the House of parliament on the occasion of the discussion of the Budget for the year 2002, analysed the current economic developments and the prospects of the Cyprus economy as well as the strategic direcitons of the socio- ecenomic policy of the Government. Particular emphasis was placed on the challenges that arise from the pre-accession course of Cyprus to the EU and its accession negotiations. He analysed also the philosophy and the main priorities of the Budget for the year 2002.

The Mininster mentioned also that Cyprus is leading among the candidate countries in terms of the harmonisation with the acquis. The central objective of our policy, he stated, is the completion of the harmonisation process by the end of 2002.

With reference to the role of the state, Mr Klerides outlined that the state concentrates on providing social goods and services that contribute to the improvement of the citizen/s everyday life and prepares him for the highly competitive economy of the 21st century.

The Minister of Finance outlined the economic achievements for the year 2001, including the high rate of economic growth, the preservation of full employment conditions in the labour market, the containment of both the inflation rate and the fiscal deficit, as well as the increase of the standard of living of the citizens.

Cyprus submitted its first Pre-accession Economic Programme for the period 2000-2004 to the European Commission in May 2001. The Minister underlined: "The preparation of the Programme constitutes an important step towards the envisaged harmonisation of our economic policy with the European Union".

Fiscal policy constitutes the core of the Programme for achieving the stated macroeconomic and social goals. A further reduction of the fiscal defeicit leading to a balanced budget by 2004 is one of our main policy priorities.

The next step as far as fiscal policy is concerned, is the tax reform. The Government's ambition is the creation of a tax system characterised by simplicity and effectiveness in raising revenues as well as being just from the social point of view. The state does not aim at using tax reform to raise revenue. He hoped that the required consensus will ultimately be achieved for promoting the tax reform.

Finally, the Minister emphasized the necessity for social consensus which is necessary in order for Cyprus to be able to successfully deal with today's challenges. "We have to display the same collective spirit in economicissues, which are currently a cause for international concern, that we have shown in the negotiations for solving the Cyprus problem and in efforts to become a full member of the European Union. Yes, with the same collective action, we will resolve the challenges confronting the economy, as well as the issue of accession to the EU, which through its institutional framework and dynamism can work as a catalyst for a just and viable solution to the Cyprus problem".

[02] Statements following meeting between British Foreign Secretary Mr Jack Straw and Greek Foreign Minister Mr George Papandreou, London, 4 October 2001

In his statements, Greek Foreign Minister, Mr George Papandreou said: "We also talked about Cyprus and I thank the British Government and you, Jack, for what you have been doing to try to help to solve this problem.

I just want to state that Greece will be working very hard not only to combat terrorism but also in our region to help stabilisation and we are in very close cooperation with the British Government and you, Jack, on the issue of the Balkans and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, of course, to make sure that the framework agreement does stick and that this country is stabilised, which is useful and very important for the whole region".

Concerning a question about being more specific on what was discussed on the Cyprus issue and especially on the danger of being marginalised under the new situation, Mr Straw said the following: "Well, there is no danger, as far as we are concerned, of the position of Cyprus being marginalised. You will be aware that we have a special Envoy, Sir David Hannay, who has been playing a very important role in trying to secure an effective, political process to resolve the Cyprus question. You will also be aware that Cyprus is an applicant country for membership of the European Union. We have been encouraging Cyprus in that regard and we taken note of the fact that Cyprus has closed chapters, in other words agreed more sections of what will be the final treaty of accession than any other applicant state. And we are very pleased to note that that is what Cyprus has so far achieved".

Mr George Papandreou added that: "Our discussions were also about Cyprus. There have been many efforts. I met Kofi Annan yesterday and there will be continued efforts for peace and a viable solution on Cyprus and certainly, as Secretary Straw said, there is a very important process, which is continuing, within the European Union".

[03] Meeting between Euro MP and the High Commissioner of Cyprus to the UK

Conservative Euro MP, Theresa Villiers, met on 3 October 2001, with Cypriot High Commissioner to the UK, Myrna Cleopa, to discuss the need for talks forthe solution of the Cyprus problem.

After the meeting, Mrs Villiers stated the following:"The United Nations tried to promote the process by inviting the two leaders in New York in September. It is disappointing that the Turkish side rejected the invitation. This approach leads to no where the two sides. I hope, together with the High Commissioner, that the talks will be resumed the earliest possible".

[04] Dr Lyssarides on a special mission to the Organisation of the Islamic Conference

Dr Vassos Lyssarides has been appointed by the President of the Republic, Glafcos Clerides, as Special Representative on a series of missions to the member countries of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference. These missions will include Libya, Tunisia, Marocco and Algeria.

Dr Lyssarides will be meeting with Libya/s leader, General Muamar Kantafi, to whom he will convey a presidential message with the aim of Libya taking the initiative, in the context of the forthcoming Islamic Conference, for the prevention of new Turkish efforts for the recognition of Mr Denktash's separative "regime" and the improvement of the Islamic Conference's resolution on the "Situation in Cyprus".


From the Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office (PIO) Server at http://www.pio.gov.cy/


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