Ministry of Transport, Communications and Works of
Cyprus has published an expression of interest for the privatization of
Limassol Port on 18th June at the government`s e-procurement website.
Three long-term contracts are available for commercial
- container facilities,
- a multipurpose terminal and
- marine services.
Contracts shall be granted to three
operators or a single consortium for all three.
Expression of interest submission deadline is 17thJuly; the interested parties will be informed if they have pre-qualified by 5thAugust. A final selection will be made in the first quarter of 2016.
overall port area is estimated to be 1,5 million sq.m. and currently services
100% of the container traffic, 40-50% of total cargo and 75% of the passenger
traffic in Cyprus.
The future development of part of the site, to
accommodate companies which offer services to other companies dealing with
Hydrocarbon exploration and storage is one of the future development projects
which can be added to the port by the successful bidder.
The privatization of the main multifunctional port
of Cyprus, is expected to aid the significant expansion and development of the
port's operations and consequently result in a major financial boost to the
Source: Republic of Cyprus, Ministry of Transport,
Communications and Works
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The implementation of agreements signed between Cyprus and Russia in the context of President Nicos Anastasiades' recent visit to Moscow was examined during the Cyprus-Russia Business & Investment Forum on 20th of March.
Cyprus-Russian Business Association organised the event in cooperation with the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCCI) and the Chamber of Commerce of the Russian Federation. The participation of both Cypriot and Russian firms, individuals specialising in the field of natural gas and energy was aiming to strengthen the island's business relations with Russian professionals, to promote Cyprus as an International Business Centre and attract FDI to the country - the event generously supported the relationship within Russian-Cyprus business world and helped to promote further cooperation.
The event was attended by Nikolay Podguzov, Chairman of the Russia-Cyprus Intergovernmental Commission for Economic Cooperation, Georgy Petrov, Vice-President of the Chamber of Commerce of the Russian Federation and Mikhail Kuzovlev, Chairman of the Russian Business Council on Cooperation with Cyprus.
Among the issues discussed was the recovery of the Cyprus economy, recent developments in the banking sector, the privatisation of semi-government organisations, tourism infrastructure and business opportunities.
Before the event, Russia's Ambassador to Cyprus, Stanislav Osadchiy, expressed the opinion that the Forum would significantly boost further cooperation between the two countries, particularly as a consequence of President Anastasiades' solid network contacts in Moscow. Important is that the Forum managed to examine ways in which the agreements signed during the visit could be effectively implemented.
CCCI Chairman Phidias Pilides noted that the Forum aims to highlight business and investment relations between Cyprus and Russia and is expected to promote further cooperation in other fields.
President Nicos Anastasiades visited Bahrain in March 2015, where he was welcomed by King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa at the Palace in Manama.
During the official visit, Cyprus and Bahrain signed a series of agreements, including a Double Taxation Treaty, an agreement on fighting terrorism and organized crime, an agreement and a Memorandum of Understanding on air services and a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the field of Health. Bahrain's Minister of Foreign Affairs is expected to visit Cyprus soon and sign more agreements, including one in the area of Energy. The King has also decided to appoint its first non-resident ambassador to Cyprus.
President Anastasiades' visit to Bahrain is part of Cyprus' policy on enhancing relations with the Gulf countries, Government Spokesman Nicos Christodoulides said. He recalled that President Anastasiades has already visited the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Kuwait, while he has also recently paid Saudi Arabia a visit. Soon he will be visiting Oman. "Enhancing relations with these states constitutes a very conscious choice for the Republic of Cyprus", he added.
Tourism has long been a driving force of the Cypriot economy and arrivals as well as expenditure have seen an increase despite the crisis. In April 2014, arrivals increased by 11.4% year-on-year and revenues recorded a healthy rise of 20.4%.
Another recent coup for Cyprus in terms of FDI was the decision of one of the world's leading hospitality and resort management companies, Buena Vista Hospitality Group, to base its regional headquarters in Cyprus and to develop the largest wellness resort in Europe with an investment of $300 million. The rapidly expanding investment fund sector is an exciting development in Cyprus and could become a multi-billion-euro industry. With a solid Mutual Funds framework in place and recently upgraded Alternative Investment Funds (AIFs) legislation, Cyprus has great prospects to establish itself as a new regional market and a thriving fund centre.
The majority of cumulative FDI stock has traditionally been invested in the country's key three service sectors of financial services, real estate and wholesale trade - with Greece, UK and Russia being the largest foreign direct investors in Cyprus. FDI into Cyprus peaked at €2.5 billion in 2009, but fell back to just under €800 million in 2010-11, largely as a result of the global financial crisis. It must be noted that official statistics underestimate the true size of FDI, as they exclude investment generated by the large number of companies without a physical presence in Cyprus. In regard to FDI flows in Cyprus, the economic activity that attracted significant investments was the financial and insurance activities sector. In particular, there was an increase of €1,186 million in 2012, compared with an increase of €982 million recorded in 2011. Inward foreign direct investment in Cyprus was €979 million in 2012, according to revised data from the Central Bank of Cyprus.
An Egyptian entrepreneur has received the approval from the President Nicos Anastasiades for the investment of €220 million for the construction of a new Marina in Ayia Napa, Cyprus.
The construction of the marina will provide more than 800 jobs and, when completed. Operation wise, it will require at least 350 people to manage the project. The marina is expected to cost €220 million and will have a capacity of around 600 vessels, with a possibility of mooring large yachts up to 60 metres in length. The project will include residential and commercial developments, a hotel, restaurants, bars, cafes, boutiques along with administration offices for its management and operation. When it's completed in mid-2018 the marina will be declared official entry point to the Republic. The project is of great importance to Cyprus," Lakkotrypis said outside the presidential palace. Work on the marina is expected to start mid-2015.
It is firmly believed that the project will enrich Cypriot tourist product and it indeed goes in line with the objective of the new strategy of the country.
Mr Sawiris said he had opted to invest in Cyprus "because we believe in this country" which has beautiful beaches. The Egyptian businessman said he expected the project to be completed in three years. It will include a marina, a luxury hotel, villas and apartments. He said the aim was to promote Ayia Napa as a top tourist destination.
Now the construction of the marina at Ayia Napa has taken a step forward with news that the Ministry of Energy, Trade, Industry and Tourism has received a €25 million bank guarantee from M.M. Makronisos Marina Ltd. for the proper execution of the work. A few days ago permits for the division of the land were approved for the marina's road network and the infrastructure needed such as parking areas, green spaces and public walkways. The mayor of Ayia Napa, Yiannis Karousos, expressed his satisfaction with this latest development saying that the submission of the bank guarantee signalled the start of the construction phase of the project.
Despite the overall positive view on the project, marina still receives negative reviews from a conservation group. Protection of the Natural Coastline has questioned why the marina cannot be built next to the existing small harbour rather than in the heart of the Ayia Thekla-Liopetri Natura 2000 network, the destruction of which will be irreversible. Some local residents and business owners are also concerned about the potential impact the new marina will have on the area's prized beaches.
Cyprus is relying on gas revenues to lift an economy severely hit by the financial crisis. Neighboring Israel has made significant discoveries off its coast. The Leviathan and Tamar fields, estimated at 21 and 10 Tcf, will ensure the country's natural gas independence for decades and its entry into the export market. Domestic debates and a dispute between the partners in Israel's largest offshore fields and Israel's competition regulator, have delayed the completion of regional deals between Israel and its immediate neighbors.
Cyprus remains hopeful that future search activities may prove successful. Meanwhile, interrupted peace talks to reunify the ethnically split island are set to resume. The break in offshore activities could allow for some progress towards achieving a sustainable settlement for the island. Gas explorations had triggered renewed tensions between the Cypriot government and Turkey that led to the disruption of the talks in October last year. Turkey's argument that gas finds will not benefit Turkish Cypriots was refuted by Cypriot officials who maintained any gas discoveries will benefit all of Cyprus, both communities included. The year ahead will be decisive for Cyprus as it will reveal the island's natural gas potential as more exploration activities unfold.
Last Tuesday, the 21st of April Cypriot Energy Minister Giorgus Lakkotrypis denied the alleged reports published by Middle East Economic Survey (MEES) stating that oil gas companies are on their way out of Cyprus after experiencing unsuccessful results of their activity in the region.
The Minister confirmed that the changes are coming and we can observe constant progress in the field; "as far as exploiting the Aphrodite reservoir, we have repeatedly stated that a huge effort is underway. You can see the developments, they are methodical and gradual".
As per the investment growth in the region, "there is intense regional interest for the purchase of natural gas, and naturally I do not share the views expressed in the MEES report," Lakkotrypis added.
In fact, since Noble Energy's discovery of Aphrodite in 2011, a field estimated at 4.54 Tcf, the island has not encountered any additional amount of the hydrocarbon in its waters. The field has not been exploited to date. The project for an onshore LNG terminal on the Vassilikos coast has been replaced by a regional pipeline strategy given the modest quantities of natural gas. Now Cyprus is considering the sale of gas from the Aphrodite field to Egypt and potentially using Egypt's unused export terminals to reach export markets.
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