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branches with a 1.6% market share on loans and deposits. Laiki officials rejected that Centrobanka’s past antics had any effect on the future. In 2002, senior officials had been convicted with setting up 586 dummy corporations for money laundering.
Cyprus Airways trade unions once again rejected the final draft of a rescue package submitted to the EU executive to secure a multi-million loan in the form of state-aid. The plan includes layoffs and cutbacks of CYP 22.5 mln, while union chiefs insisted on no more than CYP 5 mln. On the contrary, they even proposed to hike air fares by CYP 5 per leg in order to raise revenue by CYP 4.5 mln and moving the head office to Larnaca to save a further CYP 5-6 mln.
Unemployment dropped by 854 persons to 10,695 or 3.0% of the labour force, but was up 532 compared to the year-earlier figure due to redundancies in construction and trade.
Fitch has reaffirmed Cyprus’ ratings at “A+” for long-term foreign currency with a ‘positive’ outlook, and “F1” for short-term foreign currency, with the long-term local currency rating at “AA” with a ‘stable’ outlook.
Local credit card spending rose by 11% in the January-October period to CYP 522 mln, with the average spending per transaction at CYP 40. Total overseas spending by Cypriots increased to CYP 94 per transaction.