Nicosia, January 28, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency
Russian business continues to be strategically important for Cyprus, Cypriot Finance Minister and other speakers have said during a conference here, on Thursday, on the future of Cyprus for Russian business.
Addressing the conference on behalf of Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades, Georgiades assured that the government “will remain in the lead of efforts to further transform the economy of Cyprus.”
“We shall maintain fiscal discipline irrespective of the departure of the Troika”, he said, adding that “we shall ensure that our tax system remains stable and attractive and that our banking sector remains credible and sound.”
The Cypriot finance minister promised to “strive for the creation of an even more competitive and adaptable economy and an even friendlier and safer economic environment.”
It goes without saying, Georgiades said that “Russian business remains strategically important for Cyprus.”
In statements later he said that the important message such conferences convey is that foreign investors acknowledge the Cypriot economy`s positive prospects and the significant progress achieved in relation to its stabilisation and recovery and that they continue to be interested in investing here.
The government is fully in line with this approach and wishes to continue the effort to become an ever more attractive investment and business destination.
On his part Russian Ambassador to Nicosia Stanislav Osadchiy said, addressing the conference, that there are “undoubtedly bright prospects in the future” of the Russian – Cypriot partnership.
Referring to President Anastasiades` visit to Russia in 2015, he said it shows the strong commitment for further deepening existing relations between the two countries in a wide range of fields.
Noting that the Cypriot economy has been demonstrating tangible and positive results, Osadchiy said that this is also important for Russia. Such developments have already meant that there has been an expansion of Russian business activities on the island mainly in the banking sector, he added.
The Russian Federation continues to contribute to the Cyprus economy mainly in tourism and real estate, he pointed out, adding that for years Cyprus has become a second homeland for many Russians who have come to work or rest here for a long period of time.
Russia is a valuable economic partner for Cyprus, according to Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Phidias Pilides.
In statements to the press and asked whether difficulties faced by Russia will affect investments in Cyprus, he said that Russia is a very important economic partner for Cyprus, maybe even the most important one. Certainly, he acknowledged, there will be challenges ahead, adding that “we will need to make a greater effort in order for investments to continue to flow into Cyprus from Russia.”
During the conference, Pilides said vieww will be exchanged on how to continue with the successful course of action on attracting investments from Russia.
On his part, head of the Cyprus – Russia Association Evgenios Evgeniou also spoke of the importance of Russia as an economic partner, since the export of services to the country from Cyprus amount to €1.7 billion. At the same time imports from Russia amount to 7% of Cyprus` GDP, he added.
Replying to journalists questions on the matter, he said that it has been published that one of the joint ventures interested in establishing a casino – resort comprises Russian investors and American casino operators. He also said that in bilateral meetings interest has been shown for privatisations, mainly in telecommunications.
Despite difficulties the Russian economy faces, Evgeniou said, interest in investments in Cyprus continues. In 2015 there has been sufficient activity in both real estate, the hotel industry and tourism on the part of Russia, he pointed out.