Posts by tag: our view

Archives December 11, 2012 posted by

WASTE AND MORE WASTE

In 2011, overtime and allowances in the police force amounted to €33 million, almost 17 per cent of the annual payroll which was €198 million. Most importantly, around €14.7 million was paid on the Sunday and public holidays allowance (during regular shifts),€11 million on the “shift allowance,” and €3.3 million on “overtime remuneration.” Around half of overtime pay (€1.59 million) related to policing sports events.

 

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Archives December 6, 2012 posted by

‘Bailout bills’ to be submitted for urgent approval

THE government is expected today to submit a batch of bills for urgent approval by parliament, as it scrambles to meet the terms of a bailout agreement and score points ahead of a Eurogroup meeting next week that will discuss the Cypriot programme.

The 23 bills concern public service salary cuts, new taxes and provisions that will strengthen current laws on money laundering.

Reports said the bills providing for a rise in the tax on tobacco, alcohol and fuel could be brought before plenum for approval today.

The same goes for the one regarding pay cuts, which the government pledged would come into effect this year.

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Archives December 5, 2012 posted by

Germany wants complete transparency on money laundering

 

GERMANY said yesterday it expected complete transparency from Cyprus on money laundering issues and expects quick implementation of suggestions made under international requirements.

The warning came from German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble after the meeting of EU finance ministers yesterday in Brussels.

Asked about the Cyprus bailout, Schaeuble said: “We expect complete financial transparency from Cyprus relating to money laundering issues, which fulfil EU standards and international requirements. We also expect quick implementation of all requirements that international organisations make.”

“On top of that we need extensive cooperation on tax questions,” he added.

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Archives December 4, 2012 posted by

Prices to rise as more people living under poverty line

 

FOOD PRODUCERS yesterday warned that the prices of staple items like milk, bread and meat will rise, adding to the woes of Cypriot households already contemplating shrinking incomes as a result of austerity measures and tax hikes on the way. 

According to the state broadcaster yesterday, food producers warned that the ever-rising price of grain has left them with no choice but to increase the retail price of their products in January. 

Cattle farmer representatives told CyBC that producers have absorbed the increasing grain prices for long enough, and can do so no longer. 

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Archives November 30, 2012 posted by

Popular Bank had chance to offload Greek bonds in 2009

 

FORMER CEO of Popular Bank Efthymios Bouloutas primarily, but also former chairman of the board Andreas Vgenopoulos, share responsibility for the purchase of Greek government bonds that went sour with the subsequent Greek haircut, an internal audit by the bank has found.

The confidential memo, which the Cyprus Mail has seen, is dated May 22, 2012 and titled “Internal Audit report on the purchase of Greek Government Bonds.” It was compiled as a response to an inquiry made by the Central Bank on 29 February.

It points out that “many factors have contributed to the problem. It is not just the high-risk appetite.” But it goes on to list the individuals “whose role was instrumental to our losses.”

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Archives November 27, 2012 posted by

Christofias: only banks made bailout necessary

PRESIDENT Demetris Christofias charged that the truth concerning the economy has been completely twisted, as he defended his economic policy and blamed banks and the capitalist system for the global crisis.

“We should be proud of our governance,” he said in a speech on Sunday. “The factors are external: it’s the global crisis of this exploitative and inhuman system – capitalism, but also its people in our financial system.”

The president described what happened in the banks in the run up to Cyprus seeking a bailout as a “robbery”.

And he said European leaders and international lenders agreed with him that without the need to recapitalise the Greece-exposed banks, Cyprus would not have been forced to seek financial assistance.

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Archives November 23, 2012 posted by

Troika agrees to state gas demands

THE troika has apparently agreed to all of the government’s main positions on the natural gas issue, it emerged last night only hours after commerce minister Neoclis Sylikiotis had said huge differences remained between the government and foreign lenders on the management of the island’s future gas proceeds.

The AKEL administration was insisting that only a fraction of the gas proceeds go toward paying off the debt, with the rest going into a special investment fund and a part used for energy infrastructures. These demands were accepted, CyBC reported last night.

The dispute over the gas proceeds was said to be a deal breaker for an overall state bailout.

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Archives November 21, 2012 posted by

Man held over fatal stabbing

A MAN with a history of mental illness was yesterday taken into custody over the fatal stabbing of 23-year-old Apostolis Athanasiou in Limassol late on Monday.
It later emerged that the suspect, Eleftherios Constantinou, has a track record of violent behaviour.
Constantinou, 22, is set to appear before a Limassol court today, where police will ask that he be remanded for eight days. He faces charges of premeditated murder.
According to police, the incident took place around 10.30pm on Monday in Kato Polemidia, Limassol. The two men were neighbours.
The suspect allegedly got into a row with Athanasiou over the latter’s choice of parking. The victim, who had just returned home, had parked his car in a nearby field.

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Archives November 16, 2012 posted by

Stabbing tourists to face manslaughter charges

THREE teenage British tourists will face manslaughter charges when they go on trial early next year for allegedly killing a young British soldier during a nightclub brawl in Ayia Napa.

Mohamed Abdulkadir Osman, 19, and two 17-year-old suspects who cannot be named for legal reasons, appeared in court yesterday but did not have to answer any charges.

The trio from London will be asked to enter a plea when the case goes to trial at Larnaca criminal court on January 24.

Famagusta district court will decide today whether the Britons will remain in custody or be freed on bail until their trial.

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Archives November 7, 2012 posted by

"Gas licence a sweetener for Russian loan”

LAST WEEK’S decision to award an offshore gas exploration licence to a consortium which includes a subsidiary of Gazprombank may have been a sweetener for a hoped-for Russian loan to keep the government afloat until the end of its term, reports said yesterday.

Daily Alithia, a newspaper supportive of the DISY party, said the Cabinet’s decision to award the Block 9 licence to a consortium including GPB Global Resources BV (a Gazprombank subsidiary) was clearly a political decision designed to sugar-coat a request made by Cyprus for a €1 billion loan from Russia.

But according to the paper, the loan would not come from the Russian government per se, but rather from Russian banks involved in the Block 9 project.

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