Özgürgün: “Delegation of any authority with the Coordination Office is out of the question”
Prime Minister Hüseyin Özgürgün stated that: “Delegation of any authority to the Coordination Office is out of the question”. On the contrary, significant resources will be allocated for youth and sports in accordance with the approved projects.
Speaking at a workshop, Prime Minister Özgürgün insisted that the Coordination Office plans to support the Turkish Cypriot youth, thus clarifying any misunderstandings on this issue.
Underlining that no authority was delegated to the Coordination Office, Özgürgün said “There will be help and support for the Turkish Cypriot youth as per this agreement which has been finalised by an international treaty between two states that recognize each other.”
Pointing out that the agreement had been approved by the Assemblies of the Turkey and the TRNC, Özgürgün said that the Coordination Office will serve the Turkish Cypriot youth and sports through a law to be implemented by the Prime Ministry.
Finally, the Prime Minister stated that according to the agreement, the projects and investments which are not approved by the TRNC will not be pursued.
President Akıncı’s press conference: “We are about to complete the negotiations chapter on federal competences”
Stating that the negotiations chapter on federal competences is near completion, President Mustafa Akıncı said that Negotiators and Leaders could finalize this matter at their next meeting.
Upon his return to the Presidency, President Akıncı explained that the meeting had been “efficient and detailed”, adding that both parties were “on the verge of finalizing the chapter on federal competences”.
President Mustafa Akıncı then answered questions from the press:
– He acknowledged that there are problems at Derinya and Aplıç crossing-points, concerning the process of requesting for tender involving the UN Development Program and EU financing. He assured the press that this issue had been addressed prior to the Leaders’ meeting. He said that the UNDP went out to tender for the two crossing points. He reminded the press that the remaining work regarding ongoing road projects on both sides will be carried out through requests for tender. Referring to claims that there will be a delay concerning Aplıç crossing point on the southern side to be constructed by Greek Cypriot contractors, President Akıncı stressed that regardless of the difficulties, he is hopeful that Greek Cypriots are able to complete the preparations within four or five months.
– Asked about recent comments by the Greek Cypriot administration that: “if enough [oil and gas] reserves are found, a part of the income will be used for financing a solution but it shouldn’t be forgotten that this is also the responsibility of other states”, and whether the Turkish Cypriot side will propose establishing a committee dedicated to the funding of a solution, President Akıncı responded that the natural resources in the Eastern Mediterranean could be an opportunity for increased cooperation, but also tension, not only for Cyprus but also the wider region.
President Akıncı added that the international community and the EU have reiterated their support for the funding of a solution. In addition, Turkey will not walk away from its responsibility on this issue. “The necessary step ahead of us is to reach consensus to establish a federal structure which will protect the two sides” said the President.
Meral Akıncı and Andri Anastasiades contribute to the negotiation process
First Lady Meral Akıncı and First Lady Andri Anastasiades came together at the buffer zone with the aim of contributing to the ongoing Cyprus negotiations process.
Mustafa Akıncı’s wife Meral Akıncı and Nikos Anastasiades’ wife Andri Anastasiades discussed issues pertaining to gender equality.
The UN Secretary General’s Special Representative Elizabeth Spehar and UNFICYP Commander Major General Kristin Lund were also present at the meeting that took place at the Ledra Palace Hotel.
Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce: “North Cyprus is 9.51 % cheaper”
Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce (TCCC) stated that North Cyprus is 9.51% cheaper than South Cyprus.
TCCC explained that their “Comparative Price Levels” analysis was updated in June by adding new products to the average basket to better reflect daily consumer needs. The new results of the TCCC study are based on this updated basket, and are valid as of early June 2016.
According to TCCC, the basket of goods cost 539.14 TL in North Cyprus, whereas the same basket cost 590.42 TL in South Cyprus, based on the prices of 7 June 2016.
The TCCC statement continued as follows:
“Within the scope of this study, we compared the prices of 49 products based on one-to-one equivalent product (brand, weight). The prices we take into account are an average of 3 supermarkets chosen from North Cyprus and South Cyprus. The study does not reflect the prices of the products sold directly by producers, for example in the countryside.”
One out of every four people in South Cyprus is foreign
Greek Cypriot daily Fileleftheros reported that the number of foreign people residing in South Cyprus exceeds 208,000; there is a decrease in the number of third country nationals, and an increase in the number of EU citizens.
The newspaper also reported that the number of those currently residing illegally in South Cyprus is not known exactly; but used to be in the region of 15 to 20,000.
According to the data from the Greek Immigration Office, there are currently 208,325 foreigners registered in South Cyprus. 61,301 of them are third-country nationals and 147,024 people are EU citizens.
In addition, the newspaper wrote that as per a citizenship for investment programme, foreigners who want to obtain “Cypriot citizenship” can do so by investing 5 million Euros on the Island (through buying government bonds, becoming Cypriot company shareholders, buying immovable property, investing in any immovable property for the public interest, or investing in a local banks with a 3-year deposit account).
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Pictures shown are courtesy of the TRNC Public Information Office Facebook page.