Financial Mirror (Cyprus) - - FRONT PAGE -



The rate at which the CYP will be locked to the euro will be set at the up­com­ing Ecofin meet­ing by the Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank and the Cen­tral Bank of Cyprus, al­ready fixed at 1.7086 eu­ros.



The IMF is­sued a 53-page progress re­port on Cyprus, gen­er­ally seen as favourable, but rais­ing con­cerns about ris­ing labour costs that make the econ­omy un­com­pet­i­tive, as well as a need for more struc­tural re­forms, ex­ces­sive lend­ing in real es­tate and an un­reg­u­lated Co-op­er­a­tive sec­tor. (Ed’s note: Told you so…?)

Bank of Cyprus and Laiki were re­vis­ing their card loy­alty schemes and upped their thresh­old to re­deem bonuses by 40-45%, forc­ing card­hold­ers to rush to re­deem their points ahead of the move. Hel­lenic al­ready an­nounced a sim­i­lar move in De­cem­ber.

Tax amnesty:

The gov­ern­ment has raised CYP 119 mln from the one-off tax amnesty for the dec­la­ra­tion of se­cret or other in­comes earned up to De­cem­ber 2002. Fi­nance Min­is­ter Makis Ker­avnos said this means that CYP 2.5 bln funds or sources of in­come were de­clared.




Re­tail­ing gi­ant Or­phanides Hy­per­mar­kets (re­mem­ber them?) is giv­ing away 17 Mit­subishi Colts to mark its 17th birth­day. Chair­man Chris Or­phanides said the com­pany had em­barked on a three-year ex­pan­sion drive that will in­clude more store open­ings.


Op­po­si­tion DISY leader Ni­cos Anas­tasi­ades and the party’s ex­ec­u­tive mem­bers met with Repub­li­can Party (CTP) leader Mehmet Ali Talat who said that he will put for­ward new pro­pos­als to re­sume peace talks af­ter the April 17 elec­tions in the north.

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