Daily Archives: December 9, 2012

Archives December 9, 2012 posted by

Officials scrutinise long-awaited bank report

CYPRUS yesterday received a preliminary report outlining how much money would be necessary to recapitalise its banks but an official overall figure was not immediately available.
The amount needed to recapitalise the island’s banks is key to concluding a comprehensive bailout deal with international lenders.
“The steering committee is looking at the report from this morning, particularly the methodology used to establish the preliminary needs for the recapitalisation of the banks,” said Central Bank spokeswoman Aliki Stylianou.
The report was delivered in the early morning hours and had been expected to be made public at noon.

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Our view: A shameful lack of public spirit

EVERY DAY a new interest group protests against the provisions of the memorandum and argues that provisions affecting its members must be rejected. They all want to be exempted, for constitutional or financial or social or emotional or moral reasons and each group believes it is entitled to preferential treatment. By Thursday when the first bills of the bailout were being approved at the legislature more than a dozen different groups had protested or complained about allegedly unfair provisions.

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Tales from the Coffeeshop Philanthropy in a time of crisis

THE ALTRUISM and sense of community of the highest-paid members of our society really warms the heart.
As if it were not bad enough having the judges taking the government to court because it had cut four or five per cent from their fat salaries last year, this week we had the state hospital doctors moaning because their earnings disqualified them for free healthcare, which they enjoyed until recently. The decision was “unacceptable, unethical and immoral”, said the doctors’ representative.

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DIKO plays down charges of nepotism

CENTRIST DIKO party yesterday sought to play down a newspaper report suggesting its leader, Marios Garoyian, engaged in nepotism.
Daily Phileleftheros published copies of faxes sent from Garoyian’s office, when he was House president, with the personal details of people and the service the party allegedly did for them.
The lists were sent to DIKO MPs ahead of the May 2011 general elections and their task was to secure the vote of the people named on the list.
Under the heading “cases with a positive outcome” the documents listed what the issue was and what action had been undertaken.
They mainly concluded with the phrase “OK, done.”

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Fame beckons for Cyprus Gangnam creator

FOR Nicolas Jovani, YouTube has provided a stab at fame on an island that had so-far shunned his attempts at stardom.
“OPA Cyrus Style”, Jovani’s local parody of the hugely famous song “Gangnam Style” by South Korean pop sensation PSY, has amassed more than 600,000 views just one month after being uploaded.
While it still has a long way to go before it betters the original which is now the most-watched video on YouTube ever with more than 800 million views, “OPA Cyprus Style” is now being sung and imitated by thousands of children and teens in Cyprus.
“After being given small parts on different TV series the reaction I got was that I wasn’t good enough or funny enough,” Jovani said.

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Language tourism offers an income boost in troubled times

TRAVELLING to Cyprus to learn English could provide the tourist sector with a much needed boost during this period of economic crisis.
Although Cyprus’ English language tourism (ELT) industry is growing with rising demand from overseas students wishing to take various language programmes on the island, insiders say red tape and bureaucracy is blocking the industry’s attempt to expand further.
“This is a phenomenal new industry which appears to have bypassed Cyprus,” said director of the English Learning Centre in Limassol and Malvern House Cyprus, Yiota Kontolouca.
“Malta is one twenty-ninth the size of Cyprus and shares some of the same characteristics yet it is the fifth most popular destination worldwide for ELT,” she added.

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Bus service restarts after minister intervenes

BUS services returned to normal yesterday after Nicosia and Limassol drivers ended their strike following the mediation of Communications Minister Efthimios Flourentzos.
Drivers went on strike last week over the companies’ failure to pay their wages. Companies said they had cash flow problems because the government had not transferred the agreed funds.
Tasos Michaelides, director of Nicosia bus company OSEL, said drivers returned to work at 11.45 following a proposal tabled by Flourentzos.
Despite the agreement, Michaelides said his company will go to court in a bid to resolve an outstanding dispute over the amount of rent paid for the buses.

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Bank employees should not escape unscathed from cuts

IN MY LAST few articles I wrote about how provocative and unjustified the reaction of the union bosses of the public employees was to the measures contained in the memorandum. I showed with figures that even after the cuts envisaged by the measures, employees in the broader public sector would still be considered privileged in comparison to their private sector colleagues.
For the sake of fairness, however, it should be mentioned that apart from public and semi-governmental employees, there is another privileged group of workers that, for the time being, have been left untouched by austerity. I refer to the bank employees, and I refer to all of them from the top executives down to the lowest clerical officer.

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