Daily Press Review - 27/8/2019

ΠΟΛΙΤΗΣ NEWS Δημοσιεύθηκε 27.8.2019
Daily Press Review - 27/8/2019
Stockwatch reports that new large-scale projects are underway in the Fassouri area; the development of MyMall and the upcoming launch of the casino

€20,000 fine over wedding at Limassol port


The Cyprus Ports Authority (CPA) has fined DP World Limassol €20,000 for holding a wedding reception at room T1 of its new passenger terminal at the end of May, without seeking permission. As Phileleftheros reported in May, both the Transport Ministry (which manages the concession contract for Limassol port) and the CPA as the supervisory authority were left speechless when they saw the invitation to the wedding, which took place a few days earlier. The ministry, which based on the concession contract must provide a permit for the terminal to be used for events, and the CPA, which has contributed €14m towards building the terminal, sought explanations from DP World. According to the paper’s sources, they did not receive an adequate explanation, nor any of the required authorisations. The CPA imposed the fine, primarily because essential safety regulations governing the port’s operation were violated, as no response was given as regards the entry-exit of personnel and equipment, supplies etc., which were used to host the wedding at the terminal. Furthermore, there was no response as to whether or not the necessary passes for guests to enter, move and exit the port were issued and by whom. It is noted that the concession agreement – reasonably – does not provide for the new passenger terminal to be used as a reception area for weddings, christenings etc. In addition, the state is directly involved, as it collects or should collect 52% of the port’s turnover in the area that was conceded to the operator – therefore it should receive 52% of the proceeds from the wedding reception in the specific case.



Installation of jet fuel facilities at Vasilikos

BP Eastern Mediterranean Ltd is planning to install a complex of jet fuel tanks at the Vasilikos Energy Centre, after receiving the green light from the Environmental Authority for the construction of the project, under specific terms and conditions. The information on the project was submitted to the Authority by the Energy Ministry; the Authority then consulted the Labour Inspection Department as well as the local authorities, due to the environmental impact of the construction. It was approved on 19 August. The facilities will be built in the Vasilikos industrial area, in the Mari community of the Larnaca district, on an area of 16,981 square metres. The project will include facilities to receive and store jet-A1 fuel, as well as other facilities necessary to run such a terminal. BP’s terminal will be serviced by the Hellenic Petroleum Cyprus Ltd terminal, which neighbours the site of the proposed project, as does the Vasilikos port.







Mersin no longer valid, unknown new destination

The destination of Iranian oil tanker Adrian Darya 1, which has been at the centre of a huge row between Washington and Tehran, is currently unknown. According to the website Refinitiv Eikon, the tanker had indicated over the weekend that it would be heading to Turkey. However, its destination now is not known. The tanker, which is loaded with oil and whose initial destination was Kalamata in Greece, had changed direction on Saturday, heading to the port of Mersin in Turkey, where it was meant to dock on 31 August. However, Refinitiv Eikon did not register a specific destination yesterday for the tanker, which is currently sailing south of Greece and west of Crete. A spokesman for the Iranian government said that the country had already sold the oil that was being transported by Adrian Darya 1 and that the owner of the oil will decide what the ship’s destination will be.



Shell to meet President today to discuss “Aphrodite”

President Nicos Anastasiades and Energy Minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis are expected to put the final touches on the development plan for the Aphrodite natural gas field today, in a meeting with a high-ranking delegation from British-Dutch oil and gas company Shell. The meeting is taking place on the initiative of Shell, which clearly wants to send the message that this energy giant is also in Cyprus and is a part of the island’s energy programme, through its significant stake in Aphrodite but also as the recipient of natural gas from the Idku gas liquefaction plant in Egypt. According to Phileleftheros’ sources, while the lengthy negotiations on the changes that were requested by the Noble-Shell-Delek consortium regarding the proportional division of the deposit have essentially concluded, the negotiation for the deposit’s development plan – which must be approved by the government – is also in the final stages. Lakkotrypis has said that it is in the Republic of Cyprus’ best interests to approve both – the new proportional division agreement and the development plan for Aphrodite – together. As Phileleftheros has previously reported, based on the new proportional division agreement, 57.1% of the net proceeds from Aphrodite will go to the state. At the same time, the new contract lays out strict timeframes for the deposit’s development. According to the paper’s sources, today’s meeting is expected to encourage the consortium to finalise the amendments it has made to the development plan that was counter-proposed by the Energy Ministry, so that the approval can be given and Aphrodite’s development can be put into motion.



Long negotiations for hotels

Hoteliers, hotel employee unions and the mediation team of the Ministry of Labour met yesterday to negotiate the collective agreement of the employees, which expired on 31/12/2018. The negotiations will continue today (and for as many days needed) in order to reach an agreement and common ground. It is a regular procedure – and incredibly time-consuming – since it concerns a collective agreement affecting thousands of employees. The Minister of Labour, Zeta Emilianidou said she was hopeful that they will find the right solutions in order to avoid strike action and upheaval in the tourist sector. The Minister said that the dialogue between the two sides will continue, until there is an agreement. She said that they will make an effort in order to find the best possible solution, so that employees are protected and that no problems are created for economic activity in the country. Representatives of the unions said that the negotiation has entered a very critical stage, with a view to find a commonly accepted solution in an industry that has been greatly affected by the financial crisis. On behalf of the hoteliers, the Director General of OEV, Michalis Antoniou said that the negotiations must take place in a peaceful climate, saying that tourism is a crucial sector for the economy. The president of PASYXE expressed the hope that the agreement is renewed to the benefit of the hotel and tourist industry.



“Health and Wellness Tourism” Competition

The Deputy Ministry of Tourism announced a competition for choosing the European Destination of Excellence under the theme: “Health and Wellness Tourism”. As the call mentions, the Cyprus competition is part of the Deputy Ministry’s participation in the European Programme COSME 2019, “European Destinations of Excellence”, (EDEN) which is co-funded by the European Committee – Tourism Unit. All EU Member States as well as candidate MS have the right to participate in the programme in order to decide on their own winning destination. The competition this year aims to promote non-traditional tourist destinations, which offer authentic tourist experiences based on health and wellness services, while at the same time ensuring the social, political, cultural and environmental sustainability of tourism.



Cypriots went on 2.799m trips in 2017

In 2017, EU residents made 1.3b trips, and stayed abroad for around 6.4b nights. Their average duration was 5.1 overnight stays. Cypriot residents went on 2.799 million trips (both business and leisure) in 2017, lasting an average 6.4 nights. 49.8% of transfers were carried out by land, while 49.4% were by air and 0.8% by sea.



Businesses win from Fassouri development

Stockwatch reports that new large-scale projects are underway in the Fassouri area; the development of MyMall and the upcoming launch of the casino. The article reports that the development of the casino essentially marked the beginning of a construction boom, the creation of an essentially new neighborhood between Asomatos and Limassol. The first development took place around twenty years ago with the waterpark, by Lanitis which has huge plots of land in the area. The decision to develop the casino-resort however, triggered a construction boom in the area as it attracted both Cypriot and foreign investors. As such, more luxury projects are now underway, causing real estate prices to swell. The area is already considered as one of the most expensive ones in Limassol, since it is near the Lady’s Mile beach, Akrotiri and the Fassouri forest. The development and revamp of Western Limassol is a main priority for the Municipality of Limassol according to Limassol Mayor, Nicos Nicolaides.



OKYPY tries to fill GHS gaps

OKYPY turns to Cypriot doctors who live and work abroad, as well as Greek doctors, in order to fill the gaps created following the GHS’ implementation in A&E departments and state hospitals in general. The Ministry of Health (MoH) and OKYPY re-announced the vacancies in the Greek and European media. The MoH is continuously announcing available positions for all specialisations, in order to meet the needs of state hospitals. In fact, the MoH and OKYPY are providing additional incentives for doctors who work in A&E departments.



Scheduled meeting between pharmacists and OKYPY

State pharmacists were not informed about the changes that will be implemented on 1 September at state hospitals, which affect all pharmacists. Speaking to Astra, Eugenia Efstathiou said that the problems they encounter include staff shortages in hospitals, and transfers of personnel. She added that they don’t know what their future is or what responsibilities they will take up. Mrs. Efstathiou noted that some pharmacists were pressured into signing contracts with the GHS. This week, OKYPY will meet with the pharmacist association, in order to find a solution for these issues.

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