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EAC – Cyta staff on strike while MPs discuss privatisations Bill

25 February, 2014

Electricity Authority of Cyprus (EAC) and Cyprus Telecommunications Authority (Cyta) staff are on strike on Tuesday while MPs continue to discuss a privatization of semi-governmental organisations Bill.

EAC employees will be going on strike again on Tuesday, after an initial 12 hour strike on February 17 and a limited strike (office personnel only) on Monday.
All EAC offices and customer service points will remain closed. The necessary staff for security reasons will be working to avoid public inconvenience.

Speaking on behalf the four trade unions of EAC Andreas Panorkos said the measures will be staggered according to developments on the matter. He called on the government to withdraw the Bill and to initiate talks with all interested parties.
An indicative schedule of possible power cuts can be found since Monday evening on the EAC official website www.eac.com.cy.

Cyta staff is also on strike as of midnight on Monday. The strike will end on midnight on Thursday, Cyta trade unions announced on Monday afternoon.
During the strike all customer service points will be shut. Only necessary services will operate in accordance with the relevant legislation, while telecommunications and other services provided by Cyta will not be affected.
Meanwhile, lawmakers continue on Tuesday, at 10.00 hrs, discussing a privatisations Bill. The Parliamentary Committee on Budgetary and Financial Affairs had convened on Monday to discuss the Bill for the second time amidst a protest by EAC employees which turned sour, with demonstrators causing damage to the area surrounding the parliament building and the parliament suffering a temporary power cut.

The government has condemned the incidents. Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades has asked for an investigation into the inefficient handling of the situation by the police.
In late March 2013 the Cypriot authorities agreed with the European Commission, the European Central Bank and the IMF, collectively known as the Troika, on a €10 billion bailout.
One of the bailout’s preconditions was the implementation of a privatisations plan covering the disposal of Cyprus Telecommunications Authority and the Cyprus Ports Authority by 2016 and the Cyprus Electricity Authority by 2018 to generate €1.4 billion in order to restore public debt sustainability.