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Cyprus, Bahrain upgrade cooperation

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Cyprus and Bahrain have signed an agreement on exemption of visa requirements for diplomatic, special, and service passport holders and a Memorandum of Understanding on economic cooperation.

Monday’s signing followed talks between President Nicos Anastasiades and the King of Bahrain Hamad bin Isa Khalifa.

Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides and his Bahrain counterpart Dr Abdullatif bin Rashid Alzayani signed the Agreement on the exemption of visa requirements for diplomatic, special, and service passports holders.

A Memorandum on Economic and Technical Cooperation was signed by Cypriot Energy, Commerce and Industry Minister Natasa Pilides and Bahrain’s Minister of Finance and National Economy Shaikh Salman Bin Khalifa Al-Khalifa.

The cooperation covers industry, construction, agriculture, transport, telecommunications, hydrocarbon activities, education, scientific research, technology, tourism, investment, financial and professional services.

Among the issues on the agenda was the situation in the Eastern Mediterranean, the developments on the Cyprus problem, bilateral relations mainly on commerce, renewable resources, agriculture, Climate Change, tourism, the connectivity between the two countries, EU-Bahrain relations.

President of the Republic of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades was informed on Monday on the course of the investment programmes carried out by Bahrain’s Economic Development Council.

Pilides referred to Cyprus’ comparative advantages as an investment and business destination, stressing the opportunities provided in a competitive environment.

She said the MoU signed would boost commerce and suggested holding a business forum in Cyprus where both countries can examine ways to cooperate.

Pilides said Cyprus would invest half a billion euros in the green economy in the coming years through the EU Recovery and Resilience Plan.

Bahrain Tourism Minister Zayed Rashid Al Zayani referred to the expansion of the country’s national airline, Gulf Air, worldwide.

He said, “Cyprus was one of the first destinations we returned to after the lockdown imposed due to the pandemic”.

“There is a very successful route to Cyprus. We have connectivity with Cyprus and Greece via Gulf Air; we are considering Cyprus becoming a hub to Europe and perhaps the USA.

“We are looking at access to the US market, and one of the options is through direct flights or a transit point in Europe.”