TTTTHHHHEEEE FFFFIIIINNNNAAAANNNNCCCCIIIIAAAALLLL MMMMIIIIRRRRRRRROOOORRRR TTTTHHHHIIIISSSS WWWWEEEEEEEEKKKK
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.
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.