Formal celebrations to mark the 55th anniversary of Cypriot independence were held with all due ceremony on the streets of Nicosia on October 1st. President Nicos Anastasiades and Greek Defence Minister Panos Kammenos - on behalf of the Greek government – were amongst the dignitaries present to mark the occasion as the island enjoyed an especially congratulatory public holiday.
Those 55 years have seen Cyprus undergo some admittedly difficult times, but in 2015 the anniversary offers the perfect opportunity to celebrate the rapidly improving state of the Cypriot economy.
Brightening economic picture
Cyprus boasts the highest growth rate in the EU (0.4% compared with the first quarter of 2014 and 1.6% compared in the previous quarter); property sales are increasing at levels close to 2014’s 20% figure (17% in 2015 to date) and the international ratings agencies continue to upgrade their predictions for the island’s overall economic performance. There have been no fewer than eight such upgrades in recent months. And that upturn in domestic activity is being continually re-energised by increasing tourist numbers which were up 13.7% on 2014.
Against that backdrop Cyprus continues to attract high net worth investors and migrants keen to capitalise on the island’s booming economy as well as one of the most favourable citizenship by investment programmes anywhere in the EU. Full EU rights of citizenship are available via the €2million Cypriot investment scheme that is additionally amongst the quickest to administer anywhere in Europe.
In some contrast to neighbours Greece, the prospects for Cyprus over the medium to long term are distinctly encouraging. And with the prospect of reunification being an increasingly realistic political aspiration, the next 55 years hold the promise that future anniversary celebrations will be marked by the same optimistic enthusiasm as they were this year.