Daily Archives: July 6, 2011

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Tax bills held hostage to economic reform

DIKO AND DISY have threatened not to pass state proposed bills to help the ailing economy unless solutions are found for the economy’s structural problems first.

“If recovery measures don’t come first, we will never vote in favour of any bill that has to do with tax,” said DIKO Vice President – and Chairman of the House Finance Committee – Nicolas Papadopoulos.

The government plans to table two bills in the next few days that will revise immovable property tax for three years and introduce a special levy for all corporations – €500 for companies with a capital of below €100,000 and €1,500 for others.

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Our View: UN timeframe may be the sole fruit of playing the blame game

THE LONG-AWAITED meeting of the two leaders and the UN Secretary-General takes place in Geneva tomorrow in an atmosphere of low expectations fuelled by relentless negativity.  For weeks now the two sides have been engaging in the traditional blame-game, making it clear their primary concern was avoiding taking any responsibility for the talks’ failure rather than reaching a deal.

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University says now is time to act on economy

THE University of Cyprus yesterday sounded the alarm over the state of public finances saying it is time for decisive measures to prevent the economy from getting trapped in a dead end.

The institution’s staff said they were prepared to accept the measures taken by the government to cut the state payroll and resolve the state pensions problem and urged all social partners to work together in finding solutions.

In a written statement, the University said “the critical time has come to immediately put in place decisive measures to prevent the Cypriot economy from being trapped in dead ends” as developments in Greece showed.

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Food, fuel push June CPI to 4.2%

A JUMP in the price of food and fuel-related bills pushed Cyprus’ consumer price inflation reading to 4.2 per cent year-on-year in June, from a May reading of 3.9 per cent, official data showed yesterday.

The Statistics Department said the Consumer Price Index stood at 117.62 points in June, up 0.5 per cent from May. Food, electricity and air fare costs had risen, it said.

Decreases have been recorded in the prices of petroleum products and potatoes, the Statistical Service said.

Data breakdown showed an 8.5 per cent annual jump in food costs in June compared to a 6.04 per cent increase in May and a 3.19 per cent increase in April.

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Ashcroft begins sweeping review of bases

FORMER Tory chairman Lord Ashcroft was in Cyprus yesterday to launch the most comprehensive review ever of the efficiency and effectiveness of the British military bases.

Ashcroft made his first trip to the island to gauge opinion from military officers as well as being given a tour of army installations.

“As part of his role in this procedure, Lord Ashcroft met a range of officials and interested parties,” an MOD spokesman told the Cyprus Mail adding that the former Tory peer arrived on a military aircraft at Akrotiri.

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Cyprus Airways cancels Paphos Heathrow flight

 

PAPHOS has been dealt yet another blow as Cyprus Airways (CY) yesterday confirmed the suspension of Paphos-Heathrow flights from October 29, just days after announcing the cancellation of the Paphos-Thessaloniki route as of September 5.

In addition the twice weekly Paphos-Amsterdam flight will be reduced to just one.

CY said the reasons for the cuts were financial. However, airline spokesman Kyriakos Kyriakou said the Heathrow flight might be reinstated for the summer season next year.

“When cancelling flights CY usually gives the excuse that the flight isn’t profitable but I know that these flights are very popular,” manager of the Paphos regional board of tourism, Nassos Hadjigeorgiou said

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Little been resolved in Cyprus talks says president

RESOLVING the Cyprus problem remains a lifetime goal but as of late little has been achieved in the talks, President Demetris Christofias said yesterday, wrapping up his official visit to Ukraine.

Speaking at a ceremony where he received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Mariupol, Christofias told his audience he would be meeting UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu in Geneva tomorrow.

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Cyprus to be ‘very good friend’ of Ukraine in EU

PRESIDENT DEMETRIS Christofias wrapped up the first official visit of a Cyprus president to Ukraine yesterday, saying that Ukraine could count on him to be its “very good friend” in the EU.

During his visit, four interstate agreements were signed, the Cypriot Embassy in Kiev was opened and the Cyprus-Ukraine Business Forum was held, with the participation of 40 businessmen accompanying the president.

Christofias also received an honorary doctorate from the University of Mariupol as well as being awarded the title of honorary citizen of the city, which the president noted has been twinned with Paphos.

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Clashing views on Cyprus problem revealed by bi-communal poll

WHILE ONLY 54 per cent of Greek Cypriots consider Greece to be their motherland 92 per cent believed themselves to have Greek cultural roots, a new survey shows.

When asked the same questions, 88 per cent of Turkish Cypriots considered themselves to have Turkish cultural roots and 74 per cent saw Turkey as the motherland.

Meanwhile, only five per cent of Turkish Cypriots consider themselves only Cypriots, compared to 20 per cent of Greek Cypriots.

The results were included in a poll conducted by the Cyprus 2015 initiative and described as “food for dialogue” by the project’s co-director Spyros Christou. For the poll, 2,000 people from both communities were interviewed face to face.

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Fossil collection will not be housed in Nicosia school

THE historic Elenion primary school in Nicosia will not be turned into a fossil museum after all, lawmakers heard yesterday.

Parents and alumni had reacted when it emerged in May that the ministry had been looking into housing a collection of dinosaur bones and fossils at the school that had been donated by a businessman.

They opposed the move, fearing that it would eventually lead to the school’s closure.

The matter found its way to parliament where the Education Committee heard yesterday that the €4.0 million collection could not be housed at Elenion due to practical reasons.

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