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CIPA: Investments Should be Left out of Political Wrangling

CIPA: Investments Should be Left out of Political Wrangling

The investments sector must be left outside political wrangling, Chairman of the Cyprus Investment Promotions Agency (CIPA) Christodoulos Angastiniotis underlined during CIPA’s Annual General Meeting.

The AGM was held on Wednesday, 6 December in Nicosia with the participation of the political leadership, state officials, business bodies, foreign investors and diplomats from a number of embassies. The event honoured with his presence and welcomed the President of the Republic, Mr Nicos Anastasiades.

On his part, CIPA Chairman Christodoulos Angastiniotis referred to the need to promote investments as a top priority as well as to the successful course of the Agency to date. “With limited resources and executive powers, particularly in comparison to corresponding organisations of competing investment destinations, CIPA faced the challenges effectively, recognising that direct foreign investments offer the only safe prospect to restart development activity, in a healthy, sustainable way.”

Angastiniotis said 2016, the year under review at the AGM, coincided with important developments, such as increased investment interest in all productive sectors and the emergence of significant alternative sectors such as investment funds, the number of which is rising at an impressive rate of around 18%. Other positive developments cited were the keen interest from multinationals active in Cyprus in the past years which are expanding their presence, the successive upgrades from the rating agencies and GDP growth. Another important indication of the success of CIPA’s work was Cyprus being ranked as the second most rapidly developing nation brand in 2017 after Iceland by Brand Finance consultancy, he noted. All these “seal Cyprus’ positive course in attracting foreign investments and translate into a record increase of 9.1% in 2016 compared to the previous year,” he said.

Addressing all the state and party officials he emphasised: “Let us try and keep this important sector of investments, with which we have confirmed that healthy growth is possible, outside political wrangling. Irrespective of the results of the forthcoming elections, we all have a responsibility to improve the business environment through the necessary reforms that will make Cyprus more attractive for investments, over and above party motivations or personal ambitions that could damage our successful endeavours to date.” Within this framework, Angastiniotis urged the House of Representatives to move quickly with approving the bill to set up an under-secretariat on growth and competitiveness and the bill to facilitate investments.

In closing, Angastiniotis stressed that this year’s AGM was particularly important for him as it was his last as CIPA Chairman. It is noted that after his election as president of the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr Angastiniotis has tendered his resignation.

In her address, CIPA Director General Natasha Pilides outlined the most important direct foreign investments in Cyprus in 2016 in all the priority sectors. Moreover, presenting CIPA’s strategy for 2017-2020, she set out the organisation’s vision, actions and objectives and analysed the new initiatives to promote Cyprus abroad and the actions planned to take place over that period. She also made special reference to actions underway to promote the audio-visual sector, innovation, investment funds and start-ups.  In closing, the director general referred to CIPA’s new initiative “Invest Career”, an internet tool to match the companies’ increasing needs for talented human resources with professionals seeking employment opportunities, about which more details will be announced at the start of the new year.

It is worth noting that the AGM of the Cyprus Investment Funds Association (CIFA) was held on the same day. In his address, CIFA Chairman Angelos Gregoriades analysed the current developments in the sector and outlined CIFA’s vision to promote Cyprus as an attractive destination for investment funds.

 

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