Georgiades: “We can take it from here”
Cyprus, bailed out by the Troika of international lenders in 2013, is about to exit the ‘adjustment programme’ in March, just as the economy has resumed its growth path, Finance Minister Haris Georgiades said after briefing the European Parliament on Monday.
Speaking after a meeting with the EP Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, where he briefed members on the economic and financial situation in Cyprus, Georgiades said that with Cyprus having completed the programme, the country will no longer be included in the list of EU problems but will be in a position to contribute to joint Union goals.
He said that what he is presenting is “a story of economic recovery, of optimism and prospect.”
“We have come a long way, we have a second chance and we are determined to make the best of it”, Georgiades said. Referring to the EUR 10 bln bail-out, he said that Cyprus will be “able to complete the ESM/IMF programme on time, by this coming March.”
We have not utilised the full amount, he noted, pointing out that “more that 2 of the 9 billion [euros] of ESM funds will not be drawn.”
“We shall not be requesting a new programme and we shall not be needing a conditional credit line”, he assured MEPs, adding that “we can take it from here.”
At the same time Georgiades highlighted the fact that “the effort is far from over.”
Cyprus, he said, “has proven to be a resilient and competitive economy, an attractive destination for new business and new investment,” he noted, adding that “at the same time we know that we can do even better.”
He referred to the ongoing efforts for structural reform, noting that the government has already implemented ambitious welfare reforms, a tax administration reform and a public financial management reform.