Business leaders from both sides of Cyprus meeting in Brussels have expressed the conviction that a solution of the Cyprus problem “will benefit all sectors of the economy and will bring gains for Cypriots on both sides of the island, with significant growth to companies and creating jobs for many of our unemployed compatriots.”
They also welcomed the joint declaration issued on February 11 by the leaders of the two communities, Nicos Anastasiades and Dervis Eroglu, and supported the joint statement issued by the Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce on March 5, expressing their readiness “to support our leaders and the Chambers in their efforts.”
In a statement issued after a two-day conference hosted in Brussels by the PRIO Cyprus Center on the “Cyprus Peace Dividend Revisited”, Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot business leaders said that “to help us plan for a united Cyprus, we agreed to continue our cooperation in a number of sector-based focus groups, under the overall direction of the Chambers.”
The conference was organized with the support of the Foreign Ministries of Sweden, Denmark, Finland and Norway and took place in the presence of the negotiators from the two communities, Greek Cypriot Andreas Mavroyiannis and Turkish Cyprot Kudret Ozersay.
“Our companies are some of the biggest employers on both sides of the island and operate in all the key sectors,” the business leaders said, adding that “we appreciate the opportunity to provide feedback on the preliminary findings of PRIO Cyprus Centre’s upcoming Cyprus Peace Dividend Revisited report, authored by Fiona Mullen, Alexander Apostolides and Mustafa Besim, to be published in the coming weeks.”
They noted that during the sector-by-sector discussion sessions, “we brainstormed on some of the planning that we, as business leaders, need to undertake in order to maximise the significant economic benefits that a solution will bring. Our aim,” they added, “is to support the efforts of the negotiators and to complement the excellent work already being undertaken by the Chambers.
They expressed their gratitude to the PRIO Cyprus Centre for facilitating meetings with representatives of the business communities and to the Nordic countries for their support.
“As business leaders, we know that when an opportunity presents itself, it must be grasped with both hands, carefully nurtured and planned in detail. Let us grasp that opportunity for Cyprus,” they concluded.
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