Wil­bur Ross: Op­por­tu­nity to get out of this sit­u­a­tion

Financial Mirror (Cyprus) - - FRONT PAGE -

Bil­lion­aire in­vestor and self-con­fessed Trump sup­porter Wil­bur Ross be­lieves that Cyprus now has an op­por­tu­nity to get out of its present sit­u­a­tion, as long as it adopts more lib­eral poli­cies and fo­cuses on niche ar­eas to at­tract new in­vestors.

The sin­gle largest share­holder in Bank of Cyprus, who pumped more than EUR 400 mln when the bank was res­cued for a sec­ond time in 2014, said that there are op­por­tu­ni­ties in ship­ping and ship-man­age­ment, as well as tourism and the open­ing up of the Ira­nian mar­ket after the lift­ing of sanc­tion.

Say­ing that the out­come of the Brexit ref­er­en­dum is yet to de­ter­mine the fu­ture of the Lon­don-based mar­kets, Ross, key­note speaker at the Har­vard Club Cyprus event, said that “you have been through a hor­ri­ble pe­riod and now seem to be do­ing well, with tourism reach­ing a record and de­posits pick­ing up.”

He also called on the Cypriot au­thor­i­ties to im­ple­ment more lib­eral fi­nan­cial poli­cies to at­tract com­pa­nies that are con­sid­er­ing to re­lo­cate from Lon­don due to the UK ref­er­en­dum to exit the EU.

Ross warned how­ever that Cyprus should act swiftly as this win­dow of op­por­tu­nity may not be open for too long, as its main con­tenders, Dublin have a head Cyprus News Agency.

He said that due to the UK leave the EU vote, com­pa­nies such as banks, in­sur­ance com­pa­nies, hedge funds and eq­uity funds are plan­ning to re­lo­cate in a bid to main­tain the Euro­pean pass­port and con­tinue oper­at­ing in the EU.

“I think is a God-given op­por­tu­nity but a very brief one be­cause they are not go­ing to sit around very long,” he said.

Fur­ther­more, he said that Cyprus’ tourism sec­tor, will be neg­a­tively af­fected in case the UK slips into re­ces­sion. How­ever, Ross noted this would af­fect the next tourism sea­son, as tour op­er­a­tors have al­ready booked their char­tered flights for 2016. “This could be the next year’s prob­lem,” he said. For Ross the big­gest prob­lem to busi­ness is the un­cer­tainty un­til the di­vorce be­tween the EU and UK is fi­nalised which is ex­pected to take two years.

“This two-year pe­riod will tend to paral­yse busi­ness de­ci­sions, be­cause busi­nesses can cope with pros­per­ity, can cope with ad­ver­sity but is very very hard for busi­ness to cope with un­cer­tainty,” he stressed. namely Frank­furt start, ac­cord­ing to and the

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