A bright future ahead of us

 

A bright future ahead of us
Vasilis Polemitis, Ambassador of the Republic of Cyprus to the UAE

A message from Vasilis Polemitis, Ambassador of the Republic of Cyprus to the UAE

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Published: Tue 18 Dec 2018, 11:55 AM

The future prospects of the Cypriot economy are nothing less than bright. At the macroeconomic level, 2018 marks the fourth consecutive year of solid economic growth. The GDP is growing by more than 4 per cent, unemployment is currently at 7.6 per cent and decreasing, and government budget is on the positive with a substantial surplus, and the public debt will be below 100 per cent of the GDP in 2019, and according to the IMF estimates, it is projected to reach 70 per cent of the GDP by 2023. In addition, with a current account deficit hovering around a manageable 4 per cent of the GDP, the government remains committed to fiscal caution and prudence, while at the same time, continues to initiate and implement socially sensitive and market friendly policies and measures in a targeted fashion.

At the microeconomic level, the substantial drop in unemployment started having a gradual positive impact on personal income and individual wellbeing. In conjunction with the substantial reduction of NPLs, the re-energisation of key economic drivers such as tourism, shipping, real estate, business services, investment funds and hi-tech startups and, lately, tertiary education, constitutes additional positive signals for the future of the Cypriot economy, and society.
With private investments in excess of a billion Euro currently under implementation across several fields, and with more than half a billion of public money directed at infrastructure projects across the island, Cyprus is laying the ground work for the coming decade, which is expected to usher in a prosperous period for the country and its people.

In conjunction with the above, a number of extremely promising endeavours with a regional and multinational scope, particularly in the fields of energy, are beginning to take shape. Based on the realisation that the East Mediterranean can and should be an area of cooperation, Cyprus actively promotes its relations with all the neighbouring countries willing to abide by the same principles and shared vision for the peaceful benefit of their peoples.

This Cypriot-promoted positive agenda extends across the Middle East and North Africa, and culminates in the relations of Cyprus with the Gulf countries, which constitute a priority pillar of the Cypriot foreign policy. More specifically, the relationship between the UAE and Cyprus is, currently, undergoing one of its most productive and positive phases. It is no coincidence that the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Cyprus, Nikos Christodoulides, made it a priority to visit his UAE counterpart Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Abu Dhabi within the very first months of his tenure, following the re-election of President Nikos Anastasiades, in early 2018. During his visit, last July, the Cypriot Minister, who was also received by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, had the opportunity to meet with the leadership and senior executives of key Abu Dhabi institutional entities, and to solidify the future cooperation between the two countries in a number of strategic areas.

Also, back in May 2018, DP World inaugurated the passenger terminal of the port of Limassol, thus completing the early stage of its 25-year long involvement with Cyprus's largest and most important port. Recognising the significance of this development, the Cyprus Investment Promotion Agency presented DP World with the International Investment Award for 2018. Moreover, in 2018, Cyprus continued to elevate its presence in the major commercial exhibitions and business fairs in the UAE, attracting considerable interest for its products and services, which, in turn, contributed to the tripling of value of the bilateral trade in the last three years.

Last but not least, at the cultural and people-to-people levels, it is also worth mentioning the participation of Cyprus in the "Sheikh Zayed and Europe: A Journey" exhibition, which was organised to commemorate the relationship between the first president of the UAE and the European countries in light of the centennial anniversary of the birth of the late Sheikh Zayed. In facilitating and promoting the aforementioned political, economic and cultural activities, the Embassy in Abu Dhabi, in close partnership with the Cyprus Trade Centre in Dubai and the recently revamped Cyprus Tourism Office co-located in Dubai, will continue to add value and play a central role in the advancement of the relationship between the two countries, working hand-in-hand with our partners in the UAE.

His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, in the presence of Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, receiving Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides, in Abu Dhabi in July 2018.
His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, in the presence of Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, receiving Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides, in Abu Dhabi in July 2018.


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