Zambia reassures of its continued support to efforts for Cyprus’ reunification

The new High Commissioner of the Republic of Zambia to Cyprus, stationed in Rome, Joseph Katema, reassured on Tuesday of his countrys continued support of the efforts by the United Nations (UN) for Cyprus peaceful reunification, for the benefit of its people.

Presenting his credentials to Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades, Katerma said that Zambias support is premised on the relevant Security Council Resolutions, the respect for international law and the UN Charter.

He went on to say that Zambia and Cyprus continue to enjoy warm and cordial bilateral relations, adding that these relations have flourished at both political, social cultural and economic levels and that the government of the Republic of Zambia looks forward to enhancing the warm relations we currently enjoy to the economic sphere for the mutual benefit of both our countries.

The High Commissioner said that his main focus would be to link prospective business communities in Cyprus to opportunities existing in Zambia in the areas of strategic economic focus for Zambia as espoused in the seventh national development plan.

“The business community in Cyprus will be excited to learn that Zambia does not have any restrictions on the repatriation of profits by multinational corporations. in addition, there are also a number of incentives being offered to investors by the Zambia development agency (ZDA) which range from favorable taxation, tax exemptions for certain equipment in priority areas and so on,” he noted.

Receiving the credentials, Anastasiades said that Cyprus acknowledges Zambia as a significant player in the affairs of the African continent, and an emerging pillar of economic prosperity for the entire region. We congratulate you on the successes achieved to date. We moreover assure you of our determination, as an EU member state, to continue supporting the strengthening of the relations and cooperation between the EU and Zambia, as well as with Africa in general.

He stressed that the Republic of Cyprus highly appreciates Zambia’s support to our efforts to solve the Cyprus problem, stressing that “we continue to ask of you to follow your principled position based on international law and the relevant United Nations resolutions on Cyprus.”

Anastasiades stressed that his most important political aim has always been, and will continue to be, to reach a viable, functional and comprehensive settlement, one that will safeguard an independent foreign policy, committed to European democratic values. The present status quo is not a sustainable option, he said

“It is for this reason that, in response to the encouragement from the Secretary-General for any new input that could prove useful in bringing the sides closer, I proposed that we discuss the decentralization of the exercise of powers, beyond those safeguarding the union and cohesion of the Federal State and functionality of the government, aiming towards a more effective decision-making process, in line with the non-encroachment and subsidiarity principles,” the President said.

He noted that “this would allow us to present a more viable and functional settlement, since on the one hand it would help minimize the disruption in the daily lives of the citizens of both communities and on the other hand it would lead to solving the contested issue of effective participation and the insistence for a Turkish Cypriot positive vote in any federal institution / body / organ.”

Anastasiades assured, once again, of his determination to work tirelessly to reach a comprehensive settlement that will finally reunify our island after 44 years of division, ensuring conditions of safety for the future generations of Greek and Turkish Cypriots, without any third country military troops or guarantees.

“A settlement that will satisfy the genuine desire of our people, especially of the younger generations, to live together and peacefully co-exist, collaborate and prosper in a European country which fully respects their fundamental human rights and freedoms,” he sressed.

As regards the economy, the President said that following the severe economic crisis of 2013, Cyprus has achieved a return to positive growth rates since 2015, noting that the positive course of the Cypriot economy, as well as effective actions in the banking sector have strengthened the confidence of investors and of International Credit Rating Agencies, which is reflected by a number of successive upgrades, currently classifying Cyprus at the investment grade.

Even though Cyprus has yet to reach its full potential in terms of economic growth, I strongly believe that, as a result of the strong commitment and the joint efforts of the private and public sector alike, we are on the right track, Anastasiades said.

Our plan is to remain focused on maintaining and broadening the conditions under which surpluses and high growth rates can be generated, to continue promoting structural reforms and improving the country’s business environment, he noted.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory.

Source: Cyprus News Agency