The Financial Mirror This Week: 10 Years Ago
Gloomy prospects for tourism, tax rises ahead
Airlines said they would cut back on flights to Cyprus that would result in fewer tourist arrivals in 2004, while the gloomy prospects for the new year were made worse by news that the tax authorities were planning to back-date collections from the 1999 stock market boom, according to the Financial Mirror, issue 548, December 31, 2003.
Airlines cut capacity: European charter operators are reported to have reduced seat capacity to Cyprus fro next summer by 15%, on top of the 20% reduction made in 2003, as UK carriers have continued to cut capacity in anticipation of a possible decline in tourism bookings to all destinations.
Taxman cometh: The Inland Revenue Dept. has embarked on a massive drive to collect taxes on gains made in the boom year of the stock exchange in 1999, with all gains in excess of CYP 35,000 taxable at 5%.
Erdogan unchanged: Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the Foreign Ministry in Ankara has carried out its studies on the Cyprus issue and that “there is no different approach”, despite Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash giving the mandate for a new administration in the north to pro-solution candidate Mehmet Ali Talat.
Cars most expensive: Cars in Cyprus cost 53% above the EU average placing Cyprus as the third most expensive country in Europe, according to Eurostat.
Evrika profits rise: Evrika Group, the chemicals and foodstuffs industry with operations in Cyprus and Greece, expects its turnover to rise to EUR 43 mln, of which 6.5 mln were in exports to 20 countries, a rise of 37%.
SocGen in Limassol: Societe Generale Cyprus has inaugurated a new branch in Limassol to cater to international as well as local clients. Operating initially as an OBU in 1985, Societe Generale has two branches in Nicosia and Limassol and plans to expand further in 2004.
Stock Market: The CSE All Share Index was on track to end the year with 15.6% in losses, with the CSE All Share Index ending 0.3% higher on the final full working day of 2003, but not enough to overturn the dismal performance of the year. The large-cap FTSE/CySE 20 has lost 11.9% from the start of the year. Bank of Cyprus was trading almost unchanged at 123c (ASE: EUR 2.14), Cyprus Popular at 105c and Hellenic Bank at 55c. Market cap: CYP 2.29 bln.
Euro record: The dollar plunged to fresh record lows against the euro at $1.2525, while the CYP hit another high against the U.S. currency at $2.1365on the back of the euro’s strength, keeping it steady against the EUR at 1.7059.
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