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FinancialMirror Leaders agree to resume talks this week SEE PAGE 3

Issue No. 1069


February 12 - 18, 2014

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly … of Doing Business in Cyprus World Bank report says we are slow on reforms

SEE PAGE 4 - 5

February 12 - 18 , 2014


FinancialMirror A change of direction needed Published every Wednesday by Financial Mirror Ltd.

EDITORIAL Tel. 22 678 666 Fax. 22 678 664 P.O. Box 16077, CY2085 Nicosia Publisher/Managing Editor Masis der Parthogh Greek Section Editor Angela Komodromou Editorial submissions: Advertising inquiries: Subscriptions: ml



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We haven’t realised it yet, but the new momentum in the Cyprus talks and the conclusion of the third review of the Troika inspectors has offered us a great opportunity to put to practice what we have been talking about all this time – a fundamental change of direction and the birth of a new economic model for Cyprus. Seeing as our recently-found energy resources and quiet diplomacy have found their place in a wider political sphere, where the global powerbroker U.S. is keen to find as many alternatives and safe-havens as possible from the bullet-riddled Middle East, we should keep up this pace of stretching our miniscule influence to wherever possible or whoever will accept us. On the other hand, we must not forget that Ankara’s importance to Washington will never wane, at least not in the immediate future, just as President Obama ordered Israel and Turkey to find some common ground and start talking to each other again. The U.S. is still licking its wounds from Iraq and wants to exit Afghanistan as soon as possible, so, it doesn’t want any further flaring up of the Arab Spring into continuous battles and skirmishes among sects, not just religions. This does not mean, however, that Cyprus should abandon its own right to beef up its defences, seeing as Turkey continues to provoke trouble in our waters, even as negotiators sit down to talk about a political solution to the island’s division. But the sooner Erdogan breaks away from the Ottoman tradition of land-grabbing and leaving behind scorched earth, and looks to find peaceful partners in the area, the quicker Cyprus will respond

as a natural launch pad for an ‘economic invasion’ into the greater East Mediterranean basin. A solution, as has already been determined by UN resolutions and EU principles, should bring prosperity to both communities on the island who would be more willing to discuss stumbling blocks such as the issue of settlers, as well as the Turkish Cypriot paying their share of administration costs (in order to reap the relevant rewards). But also learning from our most recent mistakes, a general about-turn of the services industry is mandatory, which is why the National Economic Council should move faster and push the presentday administration for immediate solutions and decisions that will rekindle the economy and get it going again. On the other hand, the World Bank’s report on ‘Doing Business in Cyprus’ showed that the main weaknesses still lie in the slow-moving bureaucracy, while the Troika has pointed out that many reform bills remain in limbo at the various parliamentary committees that should work faster. In other words, our new economic policy should be just this – speed. You’d be amazed at what can be achieved, even in politics, if some lazy public servants get off their fat arses and start working for a change.


Clash over telecom rates, solution or partition? Guess what? The Cyprus talks were in the news again, even ten years ago, as Greek and Turkish Cypriot community leaders prepared to meet in New York. In other news, The telecoms regulator and Cyta were clashing over rates, while Markos Kyprianou was once again in the news, this time as he prepared to become our first European Commissioner, according to the Financial Mirror, issue 554, February 11, 2004. NY talks: As the latest intensive round of negotiations on the Cyprus problem began in New York, expert opinion


Labour talks break down, new agent for Fiat Negotiations for the new renewal of collective agreements in the construction sector have broken down, with unions demanding unaffordable rises. In other news, Demades clinched the Fiat dealership and Fed chief Alan Greenspan announced inter-bank Fed fund rates raised, giving a boost to world markets, recouping past weeks’ losses, according to The Cyprus Financial Mirror, issue 46, February 9, 1994. Labour talks: Collective agreement negotiations in the

still differed over whether a solution is really possible by May 1, when at least the Greek Cypriot part of the island is due to join the EU. UN chief Kofi Annan wants negotiators on all sides to commit to a timetable that would see talks ending by March 25, after which Annan himself would fill in any gaps on unresolved issues. The plan would then be put to simultaneous referenda on April 21, so that Cyprus could join the EU as a reunited island on May 1. Telco troubles: The undeclared war between the Telecom Regulator and Cyta over pricing policy is seen as intensifying in the next few weeks, but industry experts say the skirmishes are a must if Cyprus is to have a thriving and competitive telecoms market. New market entrants include OTEnet, CallSat and Thunderworx in the fixed line business. Markos leaves: With Markos Kyprianou set to vacate his

post as Finance Minister on may 1 when he takes up his new post as Cyprus’ first EU commissioner, the search ha begun for his replacement. Replacement candidates include Alexis Ghalanos, Christos Mavrellis and George Hadjianastasiou. Inflation-jobless: The rate of inflation in January dropped by 1.01%, but unemployment rose to 4.7% of the labour force. (Those were the days…). Trade deficit: A 7% drop in imports in Jan-Nov of 2003 helped contain the trade deficit at CYP 1.65 bln (EUR 2.82 bln). Stock Market: FW Woolworth and CTC announced a major restructuring and separation of the property assets and other investments fro the commercial operations. Bank of Cyprus was trading at the year-high at 147c (ASE: EUR 2.60), Cyprus Popular at 117c and Hellenic Bank steady at 57c. Market cap: CYP 2.47 bln (unchanged).

construction sector broke down, as employers insisted on reforming the out-dates COLA wageindexation system, with union bosses afraid this tactic would spread to other sectors, affecting 80,000 workers. Fiat Demades: DJ Demades, one of the oldest family-run companies in Cyprus, and agents of Alfa Romeo and Lancia, seem to have clinched the distribution of the troubled Fiat badge, with more European models expected in the market in 1994. CAIR loans: The troubled (as we called it even then) national carrier had secured a GBP 24 mln syndicated loan from NatWest, earning a short-term breathing space. Quality vs cost: As Cyprus is not a lost-cost manufacturing centre, because of its high wages, manufacturers need to place greater emphasis on quality

and new technology methods, said the hard-talking Trade Minister Stelios Kiliaris. M&S facelift: Voici La Mode, the Nicosia franchise operator of the Marks & Spencer brand, announced plans to open a new department store at the Athalassas and Acropoleos junction, by October 1995. Tourism predictions: Trade and Tourism Minister Stelios Kiliaris said tourism arrival predictions for the summer of 1994 were “optimistic”. Stock Market: Volumes picked up strongly, almost double the previous week’s, to CYP 678,000 for the week, driven mainly by the banking, insurance and real estate sectors, according to CLR. Bank of Cyprus traded unchanged at 191.5c, Cyprus Popular at 214.5c and Hellenic Bank at 243c. Market cap: CYP 505.5 mln (+0.4 mln from week-earlier).

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February 12 - 18, 2014 | CYPRUS | 3

Leaders agree to resume talks this week Anastasiades: “The beginning of an arduous effort”

Ban Ki-moon committed, U.S. wants to see “rapid progress” President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu have agreed to launch negotiations aimed at a settlement of the island’s decades-old division, after agreeing to a document setting out the parameters of the talks. It is widely believed that U.S. diplomatic efforts succeeded in persuading both sides to overcome their respective inhibitions and return to the negotiations after a two-year gap. The two leaders agreed on a joint declaration on Tuesday by which they express their determination to resume structured negotiations in a results-oriented manner. Eroglu arrived first at the venue escorted by the Turkish Cypriot negotiator Kudret Ozersay and his other aides, followed by Anastasiades who was accompanied by the Greek Cypriot negotiator Andreas Mavroyiannis and the Director of the President’s Diplomatic Office Nicos Christodoulides. The joint declaration was read out by the UN Chief of Mission Lisa Buttenheim, after the two leaders and their advisors met at the old Nicosia airport within the UN Protected Area that separates the two communities. Buttenheim also announced that the two leaders have instructed their negotiators –Andreas Mavroyiannis and Kudret Ozersay - to have their first meeting this week. According to the joint statement “the negotiations are based on the principle that nothing is agreed until everything is agreed.” President Anastasiades told reporters after the meeting that “this day will be the beginning in order to put an end to the undesirable and unacceptable situation that keeps our island and our people divided for about forty years.” “Today’s joint statement sets the framework for the basic principles of a solution. What is required is the vision and the determination of the leaders, but also of the people of Cyprus, to work in order, on the one hand, to reestablish the trust among them, but also, at the same time, to achieve a solution that will not yield winners and losers. Addressing the country’s political leadership and fully respecting the various views, I call on them, in response to the common wish of all the Greek Cypriots, to join forces with us for what is to follow, because it is well known that the joint communiqué is not the final solution but the beginning of an arduous effort in order to reach the desirable goals. The resumption of the UN-led talks takes place after months of discussions between the negotiators of the two sides on the text of a draft joint declaration, to which both leaders have given their consent.

UN CHIEF WELCOMES TALKS Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the relaunching of negotiations aimed at reaching a

Trade deficit shrinks 25%, exports slightly up The island’s trade deficit narrowed by a quarter or about 1 bln euros in JanuaryNovember, due mainly to a proportionate fall in imports linked to lack of consumer spending because of the crisis and a slight increase in exports. The Statistical Service of Cyprus, Cystat, said that total imports/arrivals in January-November 2013 amounted to EUR 4,385.5 mln as compared to EUR 5,311.4 mln in January-November 2012. Total exports/dispatches in the same 11-month period rose to EUR 1,456.6 mln from EUR 1,319 mln in January-November 2012. Thus, the trade deficit shrank by about EUR 1 bln to EUR 2,928.9 mln in January-November compared to EUR 3,992.4 mln in the corresponding period of 2012. November imports were valued at EUR 406.2 mln, while total exports in the same month stood at EUR 108.9 mln. Exports of domestically produced goods, including stores and provisions, were EUR 55.6 mln whilst reexports accounted for EUR 53.3 mln.

comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem and pledged the commitment of the United Nations to these efforts. In a statement issued in New York, Ban welcomed the finalisation of a joint communiqué and a formal relaunch of the talks. “I commend the leaders for their commitment to resuming negotiations and for their hard work in the past months to reach what is an important statement of shared principles and invaluable basis for renewed talks,” said the Secretary-General. “The United Nations will continue to support the Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots in their efforts to reunify the island and move on from decades of separation. I personally pledge our resolute commitment to these efforts.” Ban also recognised the “indispensable” role played up to this point by his Special Adviser on Cyprus, Alexander Downer, who has decided to take up a new position and step down as Special Adviser. The Australian diplomat’s departure also diffuses the tension on the island, with the Greek Cypriot side losing faith in the mediator, saying he was no longer impartial in the talks.

CAMERON, BARROSO, ROMPUY UK Prime Minister David Cameron welcomed the agreement and issued a statement that “today’s agreement is an important step forward.” “It provides a real opportunity to secure a lasting and comprehensive settlement and I applaud President Anastasiades and Dr Eroglu for the courage they have shown by agreeing to restart talks. Their continued pragmatism and willingness to find a solution will be vital in the months ahead to ensure that the reunification of Cyprus becomes a reality. We will continue to fully support all Cypriots in their shared aim of a unified and prosperous island,” added Cameron. The EU is keen to play its part in supporting the negotiations, conducted under UN auspices and to offer all the support the parties and the UN find most useful, European Commission President José Manuel Barroso and European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, said in separate statements.

US HOPES RAPID PROGRESS The US said it hopes rapid progress will be achieved toward a just and lasting settlement of the Cyprus problem that will be acceptable to both the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities, a State Department official said. Meanwhile, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu had on Monday a telephone conversation with US Secretary of

State John Kerry over Cyprus. The European People’s party (EPP), the largest grouping in the European Parliament, said it will champion the EU’s enhanced role in the Cyprus negotiations process, according to its President Joseph Daul who welcomed the joint declaration between Anastasiades and Eroglu. Following an update he received from the ruling Democratic Rally (DISY) party President Averof Neofytou, Daul said that he welcomed “the fact that the leadership of both the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities have come to an agreement on the joint declaration which will allow for the resumption of reunification talks between the two communities”. In a breakthrough announced last week, possibly at the behest of Washington, Turkey’s key ally that has started growing impatient with the deadlock on the island, Anastasiades and Eroglu announced their agreement to a draft joint declaration, set to pave the way for the resumption of the stalled peace talks. However, Anastasiades’s biggest stumbling block came from within, as his junior coalition partner, the hardline Democratic Party (DIKO) known for its rejectionist stance of any federal solution, has threatened to leave the government. Ironically, the president’s main support will probably come from arch-rival AKEL, as the communist party responsible for the economic downfall of the past five years and his own DISY party have always seen eye-to-eye on the national issue and a federal system that sees power sharing with the Turkish Cypriots.

NPLs rise to €26 bln in November, says CB Non-performing loans (NPLs) in commercial banks and cooperative credit institutions accelerated to EUR 26.25 bln by end-November 2013, according to figures released by the Central Bank of Cyprus. Compared with September 2013 NPLs marked an increase of 4.0% or EUR 1.01 bln. NPLs in commercial banks reached 39.11% of total loans which in absolute numbers corresponds to EUR 20.29 bln, whereas NPLs in the Cooperative sector reached 44.39% of total loans or EUR 5.96 bln. The Cyprus Bankers Association is at odds with the central bank over the interpretation of NPLs, as imposed by the Troika of international lenders (European Commission, ECB, IMF). The central bank says these are all loans that are not serviced within 90 days and will remain in the pot for a further six months, while banks argue that given the current circumstances and the inability of anyone to repay loans promptly due to strict controls and lack of liquidity, even partial servicing of a loan should allow it be exempted fro the list of NPLs. According to the central bank, the most problematic loans in the banking sector were the credit facilities granted to the construction sector that reached EUR 7.25 bln of which 35.2% are considered as non-performing. Loans to individuals on November 30 amounted to EUR 15.14 bln of which 61.44% fall in the NPL category. Restructured loans reached 14.25% of total credit facilities. NPLs in the Cooperative sector reached an even higher ratio climbing to 44.93% of total loans that on November 30 reached EUR 13.42 bln, whereas only 4.63% of total loans have been restructured. According to central bank figures the lion’s share in total Coops loans were granted to individuals, with EUR 10.49 bln, of which 53.86% are non-performing, whereas EUR 5.19 bln were granted for the purchase of property. Credit facilities to companies and public organisations amounted to EUR 2.93 bln.

Kyperounta Co-op board jailed, fined and now jobless Six members of the Kyperounta Cooperative bank were each fined 5,000 euros by the Limassol District Court on Monday for sacking the board’s secretary last year and apologised for their actions having expressed remorse. However, they also resigned as they were arrested last Thursday for contempt of court and released on Monday. The Co-op remained in limbo and could not proceed with a merger with the regional Troodos Cooperative bank as part of the restructuring of the island’s out-dated savings institutions as determined by the terms of the Cyprus bailout programme. The secretary has since been reinstated but a new interim board is necessary in order to proceed with the restructuring. The Troika of international lenders (EU, ECB, IMF) recently approved the EUR 1.5 bln bailout for the Cooperative Central Bank that has since been nationalised. The plan is to proceed with widespread mergers and downsizing of the Cooperative movement by merging regional and local Co-ops and offering an early retirement scheme for staff.

February 12 - 18, 2014

4 | CYPRUS |

The good, the bad and the ugly of “Doing Business in Cyprus” CIPA wants to take over ‘one-stop-shop’

The latest World Bank report has shown that there has been little, if any, progress for Cyprus in the annual ‘Doing Business Report’, a benchmark that determines whether it is worthwhile for companies to invest here. The need to combat bureaucracy, simplify procedures and update the structures and practices in Cyprus are confirmed through the results of the report, presented during an event hosted by the Cyprus Investment Promotion Agency (CIPA). Last Friday’s presentation in Nicosia was also different from previous analyses of the report, whereby CIPA officials were critical of the slow progress in many fields, while for the first time the CIPA chairman engaged in heated debate and outright criticism with public officials. Perhaps, the economic crisis that followed the Eurogroup’s damning decision last year and the subsequent collapse of the Cyprus financial sector, was a wake-up call. The Trouble is, once again, only CIPA and the private sector have heeded to this call, while civil servants seem undisturbed by the whole crisis, as long as they receive their fat cheques at the end of the month.

One significant outburst from the CIPA chairman Christodoulos Angastiniotis came when the Registrar of Companies, Spyros Kokkinos, tried to justify his department’s workload and that it was the fault of lawyers who created red tape with the paperwork they submit, with the CIPA chairman retorting: “Company House should become more productive and effective. If it’s a cost issue, maybe we should reduce the load of the Registrar’s office.” Angastiniotis admitted that the most embarrassing fact is that the ‘one-stop-shop never took off, with only officials from the Registrar of Companies manning their desks at the unit, while officials from other services (tax, immigration, etc.) have never shown up. “If we want this concept to work and to attract foreign investors, we should either create a new system or let it be taken over by another body. Perhaps, even by CIPA.” As regards seeking protection from creditors, the CIPA chairman said that the current legislation is not suitable and does not provide proper remedies. For that reason, plans are underway to adopt the Irish model of dealing with insolvencies, which is

similar to the U.S. Chapter 11 protection law. “Once again, we don’t need bureaucrats to deal with time consuming efforts. We have conducted our study and we have a ready-made proposal that will soon be submitted to parliament for approval,” he said. Cyprus is included in the report for the fifth consecutive year, dropping a place to 39th among 189 participating countries. Cyprus ranked 16th among the 28 EU member states, after France. In the total of ten indexes, Cyprus improved its ranking in three sectors, kept its ratings stable in one and marked losses in six. Cyprus’ assessment on the “Installation and Supply of Electricity”, “Registration of real estate” and “Execution of Contracts” indexes was not at all favourable. It takes 247 days to apply for, install and approve electricity services, the construction sector requires 735 days for a final approval, while

Cyprus lags in investment protection because of the lack of protection provided to small shareholders. Securities and Exchange Commission (CySEC) chairman Demetra Kalogirou admitted that this was a problem, but that the Companies Law must first be changed in order for the regulator to adopt and implement this safety clause. A significant decline was recorded on the “Starting a new business” and “Building Permits” indexes. New companies have to undergo a series of six procedures, requiring eight days. Once again, the problem arises from the absence of an effective ‘one-stopshop’, officials said. The CIPA President stressed that “some problems are not new. We need to change our mentality. We need to raise our pace and increase the speed with which we respond to new developments. Some decisions should be taken, no matter how difficult they may be.”

Government plans to lease ports services as part of privatisation policy The government plans to lease some of the commercial activities of the state-owned Cyprus Port Authority, Communications and Works Tasos Mitsopoulos said, adding that partners will be sought to invest in this area. “The state will remain the owner of the Ports Authority. What is under discussion is a lease agreement for a specific period to a private investor for some of the Authority’s commercial activities, if there is interest,” Mistsopoulos said after a meeting with the Limassol Chamber of Commerce and Industry on the government’s plans over the ports, shipping and public transport. As part of the conditions for a 10 bln euro bailout package from the Troika of international lenders (EU, ECB, IMF), the government has undertaken a privatisation roadmap of the

Cyprus Telecommunications Authority, the Cyprus Electricity Authority and the CPA, with the aim of raising some EUR .4 bln in four years. The first to go will probably be the telco Cyta, starting from 2015. Mitsopoulos said plans to upgrade Limassol port, the island?s largest, include the extension of the quay walls by 500 metres, the deepening of the basin, the construction of a new passenger terminal as well as the upgrading of the port’s technical equipment. “Limassol port is currently our predominant energy port and this should be clear,” he said, noting that vital installations already exist at the port to support the ongoing exploration efforts of oil and gas companies searching for resources south of the island’s coast and in offshore tracts

adjacent to Israel, Lebanon and Egypt. “We want to maintain and develop even further this infrastructure because it is very important to assist companies operating in the energy field,” he added. Cyprus entered the natural gas scene as US Noble Energy discovered a gross mean resource of 5 trillion cubic feet (tcf) of natural gas in block 12 of the Cyprus Exclusive Economic Zone that neighbours with Noble’s investment within Israeli waters. The ENI - KOGAS consortium, that signed a contract for hydrocarbons exploration in blocks 2, 3 and 9 within the Cyprus EEZ, is planning to drill in the third quarter of 2014, while French Total, which has signed a contract for blocks 10 and 11, is also going ahead with drilling at the first quarter of 2015.

February 12 - 18, 2014 | CYPRUS | 5

Troika: Cyprus outperforms fiscal targets “Some delays” with privatisation, healthcare, welfare; EIB, EBRD to the rescue of SMEs

Cyprus is the first programme country to outperform its fiscal targets, a senior official from the European Commission said yesterday, following the conclusion of the third assessment of the island’s 10-bln-euro bailout programme by the Troika of international lenders. But work is progressing slowly as regards reforms, a condition for the disbursement of the third and fourth tranches of the aid. Four outstanding legislative bills that still need to be passed are on privatisation, the FRBSL fiscal responsibility and budget systems law, welfare reforms and the healthcare roadmap. These have to be concluded by the end this month or March. The EC official said that Cyprus is meeting its targets with considerable margin, noting that “this is quite unusual in the programme countries. In Ireland targets have been met but I did not see before targets to be outperformed.” The Troika revised its bleak projections for a contraction of 8.7% and 3.9% in 2013 and 2014, respectively, to a contraction of 7.7% and 4.89% in 2013 and 2014, maintaining its projection for a 0.9% growth in 2015. The official said that the real contraction in 2013 is expected to be close to 6%, which is a further improvement compared with the revised projections. He noted, however, that the key challenge is the implementation of the programme. “The key challenge is not to lose the momentum and continue to implement (the MOU) meticulously… this is extremely important for building the credibility of Cyprus,” he said, adding that “the perspective for Cyprus in the rest of Europe is changing.” The official also called on the banks to implement the new set of rules issued by the Central Bank of Cyprus in a bid to stem the rising non-performing loans that surged to EUR 26 bln by November 2013.

He noted that the situation will get worse before it improves but the figures concerning NPLs remain within the estimates of a due diligence report carried out by asset management firm Pimco. Highlighting the need for a reform in the insolvency framework, the official noted that “it is very important the banks to get more tools to encourage borrowers to pay,” but he distinguished the case of primary residence for which “sufficient safeguards” should be given. The amendment of the legal framework is considered as a standing request by commercial banks as an instrument to assist their efforts in convincing borrowers and especially borrowers in the construction and real estate sectors, for which a total of 7.24 bln loans have been granted of which 64% are considered as non-performing. “I don’t think it is acceptable that people who have money overseas not to pay their debt,” he said. Bank of Cyprus officials said last month that NPL recovery was on track, despite the disagreement with the central bank over the interpretation of an NPL, regarded as a loan that has not been serviced in 90 days. The EC official also noted that there were delays in privatisations and the approval of the framework for privatisations, covering the sale of Cyta, the Cyprus Ports Authority and the Cyprus Electricity Authority. Although the programme stipulated that the framework should be secure Parliament approval by end January, the Troika say that it should be approved prior to the disbursement of the fourth tranche by the end of March. He noted that privatisations, apart from securing revenues, are considered as a tool to attract foreign direct investments (FDIs) which would in turn help stabilise the economy. Acknowledging that the credit crunch since last March has

also spun into a vicious circle for borrowers, the official said that FDIs, in the form of investing in the privatisation process, would also inject liquidity onto the system. More funds are expected to become available, the EC official said, explaining that in addition to the 150 mln euros facility provided by the European Investment Bank, the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), that helped revive the post-Soviet economies of eastern Europe, may also be offering some facility to Cyprus. “The aim is top provide as much liquidity into the market that would ultimately benefit the small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs),” the official said. The Troika mission also concluded that private consumption contracted, although by less than expected, while tourism and professional services have proven resilient. The financial sector is also showing signs of stabilisation. The economy is adjusting flexibly as prices and wages are declining, helping to cushion the full impact of the recession on jobs. Still, unemployment remains very high. Moreover, the Troika sees as second challenge the need to normalise payment flows in the economy while safeguarding financial stability. With key milestones in the authorities’ roadmap now completed, the second phase of gradual relaxations of restrictions is expected to start shortly, it noted. Finally, the international lenders underline that efforts need to continue to strengthen implementation of banking sector regulation and supervision as well as of the antimoney laundering framework. Conclusion of this review is subject to the approval process of both the EU and the IMF and is expected to be considered by the Eurogroup, the ESM board, and the executive board of the IMF by early April. Its approval would pave the way for the disbursement of EUR 150 mln by the ESM, and about 86 mln by the IMF.

Rise in NPLs in line with Pimco projections, says IMF’s Velculescu The increase in non-performing loans (NPLs) in the Bank of Cyprus (BOCY) is in line with Pimco’s projections, IMF Mission Chief for Cyprus Delia Velculescu has said. Pimco carried out a due diligence report on the island’s banking system last year, on the basis of which the Cypriot banks were recapitilised. Asked about the increase in NPLs, during a conference call on the third review of Cyprus’ adjustment programme, Velculescu said that “what we have seen so far remains in line with the Pimco projections”. Velculescu said that the main conclusion of the Troika mission of international lenders (EC, ECB, IMF) is that “the programme remains on track although challenges remain”. “Cyprus still faces significant risks. Continued full and timely policy implementation remains essential for the success of the program,” she noted. Velculescu said that the macro fiscal performance has been better than expected, adding that the Troika expects output to have fallen by around 6 percentage points in 2013, which “represents deep and painful recession which is coupled with falling wages and rising unemployment.” Still, she added, it remains close to 2 percentage points better than forecast during the last review and it is close to 3 percentage points better than the initial programme forecast. The IMF official said that there are signs of stabilisation in the banking sector, with BOCY making progress in

implementing its restructuring plan and the Cooperative sector having put in place a restructuring plan as well. “All preconditions for the recapitalisation of the Coop sector have been fulfilled and we expect the recapitalisation

of the sector to proceed shortly,” she said. Deposit trends are showing signs of stabilisation in recent months, she added. Velculescu underlined that “important challenges remain” for the economy. “We have not changed the programme forecast for 2014 and beyond which projects output to fall by 4.8% this year and to modestly grow next year by about 0.9%.” “Given that the macroeconomic uncertainties surrounding the outlook remain large, the authorities will need to continue to implement the 2014 budget prudently, building on their strong fiscal performance to date,” she noted. In the financial sector one key challenge is dealing with the very high level of non-performing loans, she said. “In this regard banks and the Co-ops will need to put in place adequate arrears management frameworks and the authorities will need to reform the debt restructuring legal framework to provide incentives for borrowers and lenders to negotiate and reach solutions,” she added. Another key challenge, according to Velculescu, is to normalise payment flows in the economy while safeguarding financial stability. “The authorities have a milestone based roadmap to guide this process. With key milestones now completed, the second stage of gradual relaxations of restrictions is expected to start shortly,” she said.

Georgiades to announce “significant relaxations” next week Finance Minister Haris Georgiades announced that there will be significant relaxations to capital controls next week. Georgiades noted that the third review of Cyprus’ adjustment programme “has been successfully completed”. A delegation of the Troika of international lenders (EC, ECB, IMF), completed the third programme review on Monday and depart today. “There has been significant progress” Georgiades told the press, adding that

“the banking sector is stabilising.” “I can announce that, starting next week, we will have significant relaxations of the restrictive measures,” said the minister. He noted however that the challenge to deal with non performing loans still remains. Public finances remain under control, confirming the correctness of the planning and decisions made so far, he said. Georgiades also said that the updated

Memorandum of Understanding includes no alterations in timetables and in relation to the recovery process of non performing loans. “No new provisions are introduced and there are no changes in key macroeconomic data for the next years,” said the Finance Minister. He pointed out that all of the Government’s moves and planning aim at creating a new development dynamic and added that through development,

investments, entrepreneurship and encouragement of the private sector, unemployment will be tackled. He noted that in order for the next tranche to be disbursed the parliament must pass the bill for the privatisation of semi governmental organisations, warning that if the bill does not get House approval “we will have problems during the next Eurogroup meeting”. He said that the bill will be sent to the Parliament soon.

February 12 - 18, 2014


Central bank warns over Bitcoin risks “Worries are reasonable” says Neo & Bee

The Central Bank of Cyprus has issued its second warning in two months over risks related to virtual currencies, saying that the Bitcoin is not legal tender. But the Cyprus-based Neo & Bee that is raising awareness about the virtual currency, agrees with the warnings, but adds that it would be better if local authorities helped regulate it as it would benefit consumers and businesses, alike. “The CBC does not authorise any activity falling within its mandate unless legal compliance is ensured. Any activity without the required license is liable for breach of law,” the central bank said in an announcement. To date, efforts by Bitcoin marketers Neo & Bee to open a channel of communication with the central bank seem to have failed, while the institution’s hesitation to deal with the matter has forced the Cyprus Stock Exchange and the regulator Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission to put plans for the introduction or use of Bitcoin on the backburner. Neo & Bee plans to open a series of information stores in Cyprus to raise awareness about the virtual currency, while admitting there are risks involved, just as is the case of trading in any currency, equity or commodity. The CBC warned that there are no specific regulatory protection measures to cover losses from the use of virtual currencies if a platform that exchanges or holds them collapses and, thus, there is the risk of losing their money. Noting some of the risks associated with virtual currencies, the CBC pointed out that there is no guarantee or legal obligation to reimburse at face value virtual currency owners,

nor to reimburse them at any time. It also said that the price of virtual currencies is subject to high volatility and it may rise sharply or even fall to zero value. The CBC said that acceptance of virtual currencies by merchants is based on their discretion and may cease to exist at any point and with no prior notice, in other words, any merchant may refuse to accept it for payments. The University of Nicosia has already started accepting fee payments in Bitcoin, primarily from students whose home countries have rigid and slow-paced banking systems, such as strict exchange controls. But a UNic official had told the Financial Mirror earlier that the university did not intend to trade in the virtual currency, but only accept it as a method of payment, subsequently cashed into the local currency, the Euro. Seeing the opportunity that lies in studying the new domain of virtual currencies, the University of Nicosia has also introduced a comprehensive framework to help develop Cyprus into a hub for Bitcoin trading, processing and banking. It has also taken the bold step of launching a Master’s Degree in Digital Currency, the first of its kind in the world.

NEO RESPONDS “As the CEO of a company that is building the infrastructure surrounding the Bitcoin technology (Neo), I believe the announcement made by the Central Bank of Cyprus surrounding the dangers of using Bitcoin was reasonable,” said Neo & Bee’s Danny Brewster, adding that “innovation is always

upsetting, not innovating and being left behind as the world evolves has historically proven to be far more dangerous though; if not for vested interests, then for the future generations.” “We agree that anything to do with personal or corporate finances should be treated with extreme caution, including financial products offered by traditional financial institutions. That is why our business offers free education to everyone on what we offer and the Bitcoin technology, to enable individuals to make an informed decision for themselves.” Brewster said that the fact that the Wall Street Journal responded to the Central Bank warning in a comical fashion speaks volumes of the warning’s content: “So, is the institution – accused of failing to control the economy on the tiny Mediterranean island and allowing rampant tax avoidance and money laundering - saying Bitcoin is illegal? Not quite. Instead it warns that there are big risks associated with using the currency.” “Regardless of the reluctance of both the Central Bank and CySEC to regulate the businesses surrounding this new technology, Neo are still committed to establishing a clear regulatory framework for Bitcoin based businesses to operate within. We are proposing a full regulatory framework to both of these regulators and directly to the government.” “If people want to use Bitcoins they will find their own way to obtain them in an unregulated manner, even if Neo didn’t exist. So, isn’t it better for them to acquire them via a regulated market that offers some level of protection?”

Was the Cyprus haircut better than we think? GUEST OPINION: By Euronomist The most startling development of 2013 was probably the Cyprus deposit haircut, an unprecedented event which caused numerous reactions around the world. In March, the Eurogroup came up with Plan A, i.e. to writedown or “haircut” all existing depositors, regardless of institution or the amount of money in their accounts, at a flat rate of 6.75%; a decision which the Cypriot parliament rejected. After two long weeks of bank “holidays” and intense negotiations, the plan changed to the dissolution of Laiki Bank and the haircut of all deposits above 100,000 euros in the Bank of Cyprus (the final amount of the unsecured deposit haircut was 47.5% as agreed in late July). My reaction to the first plan was that it was unfair: a person with EUR 10,000 in his bank account would suffer more than a person with EUR 10 mln in his after a 6.75% cut. The second plan still seemed unfair but had the advantage that depositors in other banks would not be hurt and that the “little guy” would remain unscathed. Obviously, the “big boys” still get hurt, which means less investment and less growth, equaling more unemployment. Yet, there is actually much more good in this than was first considered. First of all, the ones which got hurt more in the crisis were not CEOs or other businessmen; it was paid employees. Have a look at the table compiled by the Economic Policy Institute for the US: As the reader may observe, in 2011-2012 the average worker compensation shrunk by 1.6% while average CEO compensation increased by more than 14%. What this indicates is that high-income earners do not get hurt by much during a recession. The average paid employee does, as similar data from Spain have shown. The simple reason is that the worker goes out first and the businessman continues to operate; most importantly it is the latter that makes the decision not the former. Even when a recession begins to fade, the businessman can exploit the situation and earn much more than before since wages are much stickier than profits (as also seen in the 2013 results of US firms). The trouble with the Cyprus Plan A, i.e. the haircut on both secured and unsecured deposits, is that the former (i.e. secured depositors) would have been more prone to the use of their wealth than the latter. As Simon Kuznets has shown back in the early 1950s, the higher the income, the less percentage of your income you spend. This means that most of the money a low- or middle-income worker earns will end up back in the economy in the form of consumption. On the contrary, the money a high-income person earns are employed differently: if you take away from him, his

consumption will not be reduced by as much for the simple reason that he will just save less. Since the economy is mainly driven by consumption (it comprises of the largest part of GDP) if it decreases, GDP will also be decreased. An additional benefit of the haircut is that since the bank recapitalisation needs are covered through the bail-in of unsecured deposits, the state does not have to assume more debt. This means less decrease in state expenses (i.e. wages, pensions, development) which again force the drop in consumption to be less than what it would have been if severe austerity measures had been assumed. If anyone doubts what the effect of austerity measures on consumption and GDP is, have a look at what has been going on in Greece over the past four years. Obviously, the haircut has many caveats: unemployment has reached 17% (the third highest in the Eurozone) and the already declining confidence in the banking sector was exacerbated, meaning that individuals prefer to keep their money under the proverbial (in this case even literal) mattress than deposit it. This can be easily seen in the data, with total deposits following a downwards trend since March, forcing the banks to request liquidity from the ECB. Yet, this is a short-term effect since keeping money under the mattress does not really work for too long. As the IMF points out, this exit of deposits appears to have reached its peak, with the overall amount in the system stabilising in October.

NPLs are still a major cause of headache, yet an increase in consumption, in addition to the banks’ increased ability of issuing of new loans due to higher equity ratios means that better days are ahead. Summing up, the haircut on unsecured deposits is much fairer than first considered. It hurts those with larger wealth, who spend much less of their income (as a percentage) than those who are on the other side of the spectrum. This means that consumption is less affected by the haircut than by austerity measures. In addition, the state assumes much less debt, as bank recapitalisation is completed via the bail-in. I am not suggesting that these outcomes were deliberate and that the EU authorities had actually considered them before conducting this experiment on Cyprus. Yet, the experiment turned out to be much better than the previous ones in Greece, Spain and Ireland. We should not forget that the deposits haircut eliminated uncertainty, a state much more horrid than the actual outcome, as it discouraged investment and development. Add this to the less-than-expected decrease in consumption and you have that Cyprus has a better chance of experiencing growth faster than other countries is recession; since demand does not fall, employers have less incentives to fire people and businesses have greater incentives to invest.

February 12 - 18, 2014

February 12 - 18, 2014


Schaeuble ready to help emerging markets Sees no deflation threa t in Europe

Recent turmoil in emerging markets will hit exportoriented European economies but there are no signs the bloc that shares the single currency is headed towards deflation, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble said. Speaking to Reuters in Berlin as part of a series of interviews with top policymakers across the euro zone, Schaeuble signalled a readiness to help emerging market countries that have seen their currencies sink to multi-year lows in past weeks as part of a broad market sell-off. “We will help the emerging markets, within the limits of our possibilities, to solve their problems just as they stood by us in past years,” Schaeuble said, pointing to a meeting of G20 finance ministers in Australia later this month. “The difficult situation in some emerging markets affects us of course. We are all dependent on exports, Germany more than other countries,” he added. But Schaeuble, who started his second term as finance minister in December, said he agreed with European Central Bank President Mario Draghi that falling prices were not a danger for the euro zone, despite a drop in the bloc’s inflation rate to 0.7% last month and warnings from the IMF that deflation is a potential risk. “There is no deflation danger in Europe,” Schaeuble said. “We understand deflation as a reluctance to spend in the anticipation of falling prices. And there are no signs of this.” In a wide-ranging interview, Schaeuble also played down the risks of last week’s ruling by Germany’s Constitutional Court on Draghi’s bond-buying scheme. The court decided to refer complaints against the so-called Outright Monetary Transactions (OMT) programme to the European Court of Justice, but it also voiced concerns that

the ECB went beyond its mandate with the scheme. Although the OMT plan has never been used, it is widely credited with restoring confidence in the euro zone after years of crisis that had threatened to tear the 18-member bloc apart. Some experts, including the head of Germany’s ZEW think tank Clemens Fuest, have said the court decision severely blunts the OMT programme. Schaeuble dismissed those concerns, saying the details of the OMT were secondary to the broad message sent by the ECB and European governments that they would not let the euro zone break apart. “I think the return of financial market confidence in the stability of the euro has been due not only, not even primarily, to the ECB’s (OMT) announcement,” Schaeuble said. “When leaders of government on the one hand, and the central bank on the other, say they will do what is necessary, then financial markets need not worry.” EUROSCEPTICS Schaeuble also touched on a referendum in Switzerland at the weekend in which voters approved new limits to immigration from the EU, saying fears about the free movement of people in Europe needed to be taken seriously. But he played down the risks of a strong performance by populist, anti-immigration and eurosceptic parties in European Parliament elections in May, saying this would only push bigger mainstream parties to work more closely together. “If we have stronger eurosceptic voices in the next

European Parliament, then it will raise the pressure on everyone else to commit even more strongly to European integration, to react to this result and make Europe more efficient,” he said. Regardless of the outcome of the vote and despite strong resistance in other European capitals, Schaeuble said Germany would not drop its push for changes to the EU’s Lisbon Treaty that it argues are necessary to ensure closer integration. “I think we will have a discussion about this at the beginning of the term of the next European Parliament and European Commission, and I am optimistic we will get a solution,” Schaeuble said, predicting progress in 2015.

The ECB’s bridge too far The German Constitutional Court’s recent decision to refer the complaint against the European Central Bank’s so-called “outright monetary transactions” to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) leaves the scheme’s fate uncertain. What is clear is that the economics behind OMT is flawed – and so is the politics. The OMT program arose in August 2012, when months of relentlessly rising risk premiums on Spanish and Italian sovereign bonds were threatening the eurozone’s survival and endangering the world economy. To restore confidence and buy time for governments to reduce borrowing, ECB President Mario Draghi pledged to do “whatever it takes” to preserve the eurozone – and that meant potentially unlimited purchases of distressed eurozone members’ government bonds. Draghi’s declaration worked, prompting a sharp decline in risk premiums across the eurozone’s troubled economies. But

Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann, a member of the ECB’s Governing Council, immediately challenged OMT, asserting that the program exceeded the ECB’s mandate and violated Article 123 of the Lisbon Treaty, which bars monetary financing of distressed sovereigns. Before OMT was ever activated, Weidmann took his case to the German Constitutional Court. OMT supporters were aghast at Weidmann’s attempt to overturn the arrangement. After all, the mere announcement of the program had provided relief to struggling governments and may well have saved the monetary union, at least temporarily. Draghi audaciously described OMT as “probably the most successful monetary-policy measure undertaken in recent time.” But the German Constitutional Court remains dubious. While it has withheld a final judgment in deference to the ECJ, it has upheld the Bundesbank’s view that OMT, in its current form, violates the Lisbon Treaty. OMT may still survive; but, if it does, it will likely be diluted, allowing the problems that inspired it to reemerge. However problematic this might be for OMT’s supporters, it should not have come as a surprise. The program was illconceived and sold by sleight of hand. The court was right to question the factual basis of the ECB’s claim that the risk premiums reflected an unfounded market fear – a claim that was based on cherry-picked evidence. Indeed, the program’s public defense rests shakily on a presumption of baseless speculative pressures. The program’s design, however, conceded that the market’s assessments of creditworthiness reflected a real default risk. As a lender of last resort to sovereigns, a central bank must stand ready to purchase sovereign debt unconditionally, in order to neutralize the effects of temporary market disruptions. But OMT is intended to operate more like the International Monetary Fund’s lending – that is, to rescue a particular government conditional on its pursuit of fiscal belt-tightening. If the ECB were truly convinced that risk premiums were unreasonably high, and that distressed countries’ debt was sustainable, conditionality would have been unnecessary. Moreover, by tackling default risk, the OMT program created a new problem: private creditors, assured that the ECB would prevent governments from defaulting, were encouraged to lend with greater abandon. Reading the decline in risk premiums as a sign of renewed market confidence in distressed sovereigns’ creditworthiness was another selfserving misinterpretation. A similar situation has unfolded before. In the pre-euro era,

By Ashoka Mody

propping up the Italian lira invited unrelenting speculative pressure. With the lira eliminated, holding down yields on sovereign debt can be a fool’s errand. Just as untenably high exchange rates must ultimately depreciate, default is necessary in cases of unsustainable sovereign debt. This is all the more important in view of the ECB’s disinclination to reverse near-deflationary conditions, which raise the effective debt-repayment burden further. Sovereign-debt attorneys Lee Buchheit and Mitu Gulati warn that markets could “mercilessly test the ECB’s willingness to persist in buying unlimited quantities of peripheral sovereign bonds.” This test will be all the more severe if, as the ECB has conceded to the German Constitutional Court, the bond purchases would actually be limited. The eurozone must allow for selective default on sovereign debt, with the ECB acting as a lender of last resort for solvent governments. Of course, solvency can be difficult to assess during a crisis. But pretending that sovereigns are never insolvent serves only to compound the problem. As the German court pointed out, the prospect of default will help to maintain financial-market discipline. By attempting to create a quick fix for the eurozone’s deeprooted problems, the ECB has stepped into a political quagmire. Even if the ECJ gives OMT the benefit of the doubt, the program’s legitimacy will remain plagued by qualms, leaving the ECB – if only behind the scenes – locked in political jockeying with distressed sovereigns. The line between audacity and hubris is a fine one. Rather than constituting a great success, OMT may well be remembered as an error born of expediency. Worse, it could undermine the ECB’s hard-won independence and credibility. That is an outcome that the eurozone might not survive. Ashoka Mody, a former mission chief for Germany and Ireland at the IMF, is currently Visiting Professor of International Economic Policy at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University. © Project Syndicate, 2014.


∆∂∆∞ƒ∆∏, 12 º∂µƒ√À∞ƒπ√À, 2014

Ÿˆ˜ Ù· Úfi‚ÏÂ„Â Ë Pimco ÁÈ· Ù· ÌË Â͢ËÚÂÙÔ‡ÌÂÓ· ‰¿ÓÂÈ· Η µέχρι στιγµήσ αύξηση των µη εξυπηρετουµένων δανείων στην Τράπεζα Κύπρου εµπίπτει στο πλαίσιο των προβλέψεων τησ Pimco, µε βάση τη µελέτη τησ οποίασ ανακεφαλαιοποιήθηκαν οι κυπριακέσ τράπεζεσ, ανέφερε η επικεφαλήσ τησ αποστολήσ του ∆ΝΤ στην Κύπρο, Ντέλια Βελκουλέσκου, στη διάρκεια τηλεδιάσκεψησ που πραγµατοποιήθηκε χθεσ το απÞγευµα. Στην αρχική τησ τοποθέτηση –η οποία ήταν κατά κύριο λÞγο βασισµένη στην κοινή δήλωση τησ ΚοµισιÞν, τησ ΕΚΤ και του ∆ΝΤ για την ολοκλήρωση τησ τρίτησ αξιολÞγησησ- η Ντέλια Βελκουλέσκου σηµείωσε Þτι το πρÞγραµµα τησ Κύπρου παραµένει εντÞσ τροχιάσ, ωστÞσο οι κίνδυνοι εξακολουθούν να είναι σηµαντικοί. Ανέφερε ακÞµα Þτι ο χρηµατοπιστωτικÞσ τοµέασ παρουσιάζει επίσησ ενδείξεισ σταθεροποίησησ. ΑναφερÞµενη στισ προκλήσεισ, η κ. Βελκουλέσκου είπε Þτι το ΑΕΠ αναµένεται Þτι θα συρρικνωθεί κατά 4,8% το 2014. Στο χρηµατοπιστωτικÞ τοµέα, είπε, η πρώτη πρÞκληση είναι να αντιµετωπιστεί το υψηλÞ ποσοστÞ µη εξυπηρετούµενων δανείων. Μια δεύτερη πρÞκληση αποτελεί η ανάγκη να εξοµαλυνθούν οι ροέσ πληρωµών στην οικονοµία και παράλληλα να διαφυλαχθεί η χρηµατοπιστωτική σταθερÞτητα, υπέδειξε. Θεωρεί ακÞµα Þτι οι αρχέσ τησ Κύπρου, βασιζÞµενεσ στην καλή δηµοσιονοµική επίδοση που έχει σηµειωθεί µέχρι σήµερα, θα πρέπει να εξακολουθήσουν να εφαρµÞζουν τον προϋπολογισµÞ τουσ µε σύνεση. Αναφορικά µε τισ διαρθρωτικέσ µεταρρυθµίσεισ, υπογράµµισε Þτι η υλοποίηση τουσ πρέπει να επιταχυνθεί, µε βασική προτεραιÞτητα να είναι η µεταρρύθµιση του συστήµατοσ κοινωνικήσ πρÞνοιασ.

Απαντώντασ σε ερωτήσεισ, η κ. Βελκουλέσκου είπε Þτι ο προϋπολογισµÞσ «πρέπει να εφαρµοστεί Þπωσ έχει εγκριθεί» και οι κυπριακέσ Αρχέσ «πρέπει να επαγρυπνούν, παρατηρώντασ την εξέλιξη των µακροοικονοµικών συνθηκών το 2014», ώστε να συνεχιστεί η «καλή απÞδοση» που παρατηρήθηκε µέχρι το τέλοσ του 2013. Ανέφερε ακÞµα Þτι δεν έχουν αναθεωρηθεί οι προβλέψεισ τησ ΤρÞικα για το 2014 και εντεύθεν εν µέρει λÞγω τησ έλλειψη στοιχείων. Είπε Þτι η πρÞβλεψη για µείωση κατά 6 ποσοστιαίεσ µονάδεσ τησ παραγωγήσ το 2013, δεν είναι η τελική, καθώσ δεν υπάρχουν τα στοιχεία για το τέταρτο τρίµηνο και πρÞσθεσε Þτι δεν θα υπάρξει αναθεώρηση των προβλέψεων µέχρι να υπάρξουν περισσÞτερα στοιχεία. Ανέφερε ακÞµα Þτι η αρχική πρÞβλεψη για ύφεση τησ τάξησ των 9 ποσοστιαίων µονάδων το 2013, αποδείχτηκε Þτι ήταν «πολύ συντηρητική» και αυτÞ είναι «θετικÞ». Ùπωσ εξήγησε, µε βάση τα τελευταία δεδοµένα, η ζήτηση εξελίχθηκε «καλύτερα απ’ Þ,τι αναµενÞταν», κυρίωσ λÞγω τησ κατανάλωσησ στον ιδιωτικÞ τοµέα, ο οποίοσ αντέδρασε λιγÞτερο αρνητικά απ’ Þ,τι αναµενÞταν. Σε Þ,τι αφορά την προσφορά, είπε Þτι φαίνεται να είναι «πολύ ανθεκτική», τÞσο στον τοµέα των υπηρεσιών, που αποτελεί βασικÞ µοχλÞ ανάπτυξησ για την κυπριακή οικονοµία, Þσο και στον τοµέα του τουρισµού. Η επικεφαλήσ τησ αποστολήσ του ∆ΝΤ στην Κύπρο υπενθύµισε Þτι οι κυπριακέσ τράπεζεσ ανακεφαλαιοποίηθηκαν στη βάση τησ µελέτησ τησ Pimco, η οποία βασίστηκε σε «πολύ συντηρητικέσ υποθέσεισ», για να προσθέσει Þτι η αύξηση που υπάρχει µέχρι στιγµήσ στα µη εξυπηρετούµενα δάνεια στην Τράπεζα Κύπρου είναι µέσα στα πλαίσια των προβλέψεων τησ Pimco.

¶‹Ú·Ì ٷ ÌÚ¿‚Ô, Ì·˜ ¤ÌÂÈÓ·Ó Ù· ·ÏÏ¿…. Εν τω µεταξύ χθεσ µετά και την ολοκλήρωση τησ τρίτησ αξιολÞγησησ, η ΚοµισιÞν, η ΕΚΤ και το ∆ΝΤ σε κοινή τουσ δήλωση ανέφεραν πωσ το πρÞγραµµα τησ Κύπρου παραµένει εντÞσ τροχιάσ, ενώ τα µακροοικονοµικά και δηµοσιονοµικά αποτελέσµατα είναι καλύτερα του αναµενÞµενου. Σύµφωνα µε την ΤρÞικα, οι δηµοσιονοµικοί στÞχοι για το 2013 έχουν επιτευχθεί µε µεγάλη άνεση χάρη στη συνεχιζÞµενη συνετή εκτέλεση του προϋπολογισµού και σε µια λιγÞτερο έντονη απÞ το αναµενÞµενο ύφεση. Το 2013 το ΑΕΠ εκτιµάται Þτι συρρικνώθηκε κατά 6% περίπου σε πραγµατικούσ Þρουσ. Η συρρίκνωση αυτή, αν και σηµαντική, είναι σχεδÞν 2 εκατοστιαίεσ µονάδεσ µικρÞτερη απÞ την πρÞβλεψη κατά την προηγούµενη αξιολÞγηση. Η ιδιωτική κατανάλωση µειώθηκε, αν και λιγÞτερο απÞ το αναµενÞµενο, ενώ οι τοµείσ του τουρισµού και των επαγγελµατικών υπηρεσιών αποδείχθηκαν ανθεκτικοί. Ο χρηµατοπιστωτικÞσ τοµέασ παρουσιάζει επίσησ ενδείξεισ σταθεροποίησησ. Η οικονοµία προσαρµÞζεται ευέλικτα καθώσ οι τιµέσ και οι µισθοί σηµειώνουν υποχώρηση, συµβάλλοντασ έτσι στην άµβλυνση του ισχυρού αντίκτυπου τησ ύφεσησ στισ θέσεισ εργασίασ. ΩστÞσο, η ανεργία παραµένει πολύ υψηλή, σηµειώνει η δήλωση. Οπωσ επισηµαίνει η ΤρÞικα, οι προοπτικέσ εξακολουθούν να χαρακτηρίζονται απÞ προκλήσεισ. Το ΑΕΠ αναµένεται Þτι θα συρρικνωθεί κατά 4,8% το 2014, καθώσ η εγχώρια ζήτηση θα επηρεαστεί αρνητικά απÞ την ανάγκη προσαρµογήσ του χρέουσ του ιδιωτικού και του δηµÞσιου τοµέα σε σχέση µε τα σηµερινά υψηλά επίπεδα. Το 2015 αναµένεται επάνοδοσ σε θετικούσ, αν και συγκρατηµένουσ, ρυθµούσ ανάπτυξησ περίπου 1%, η οποία θα προέλθει απÞ τισ µη χρηµατοπιστωτικέσ υπηρεσίεσ. ΩστÞσο, οι κίνδυνοι που περιβάλλουν τισ προοπτικέσ είναι σηµαντικοί. Στο χρηµατοπιστωτικÞ τοµέα η πρώτη πρÞκληση είναι να αντιµετωπιστεί το υψηλÞ ποσοστÞ µη εξυπηρετούµενων δανείων. Μετά την ανακεφαλαιοποίηση των δύο µεγαλύτερων τραπεζών και την προσεχή ανακεφαλαιοποίηση του συνεργατικού πιστωτικού τοµέα, οι αρχέσ πρέπει να διασφαλίσουν Þτι τα πιστωτικά ιδρύµατα και οι συνεργατικέσ τράπεζεσ υλοποιούν µε αποτελεσµατικÞ τρÞπο τα σχέδια αναδιάρθρωσήσ τουσ. ΑυτÞ προϋποθέτει τη θέσπιση πρÞ-

σφορων πλαισίων διαχείρισησ ληξιπρÞθεσµων οφειλών και την προσεκτική παρακολούθηση τησ προÞδου προσ την κατεύθυνση τησ µείωσησ των καθυστερούµενων δανείων. Η ΤρÞικα θεωρεί Þτι, οι αρχέσ τησ Κύπρου, βασιζÞµενεσ στην καλή δηµοσιονοµική επίδοση που έχει σηµειωθεί µέχρι σήµερα, θα πρέπει να εξακολουθήσουν να εφαρµÞζουν τον προϋπολογισµÞ τουσ µε σύνεση. Ùπωσ συµφωνήθηκε κατά την έναρξη του προγράµµατοσ, θα χρειαστεί µια πρÞσθετη προσαρµογή τα επÞµενα έτη, προκειµένου να επιτευχθεί ο µακροχρÞνιοσ στÞχοσ τησ επίτευξησ διατηρήσιµου πρωτογενούσ πλεονάσµατοσ του ΑΕΠ ύψουσ 4%, στοιχείο απαραίτητο για να τεθεί το δηµÞσιο χρέοσ σε διατηρήσιµη καθοδική τροχιά.

Σχετικά µε τουσ κινδύνουσ, παρά το γεγονÞσ Þτι το πρÞγραµµα παραµένει εντÞσ τροχιάσ, εξακολουθούν να είναι σηµαντικοί. Η συνεχιζÞµενη πλήρησ και έγκαιρη υλοποίηση µέτρων πολιτικήσ παραµένει ουσιώδησ για την επιτυχία του προγράµµατοσ, τονίζει. Η παρούσα αξιολÞγηση υπÞκειται σε διαδικασία έγκρισησ τÞσο απÞ την Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση Þσο και απÞ ∆ΝΤ και αναµένεται να εξεταστεί απÞ την Ευρωοµάδα (Eurogroup), το συµβούλιο των διοικητών του ΕΜΣ και την εκτελεστική επιτροπή του ∆ΝΤ µέχρι τισ αρχέσ Απριλίου. Η έγκριση τησ εν λÞγω αξιολÞγησησ θα προετοιµάσει το έδαφοσ για την εκταµίευση 150 εκατ. ευρώ απÞ τον ΕΜΣ και 86 εκατ. ευρώ περίπου απÞ το ∆ΝΤ, καταλήγει η δήλωση.



2 | ΕΙ∆ΗΣΕΙΣ |

∆›ÔÙ· ‰ÂÓ ¤¯ÂÈ Û˘ÌʈÓËı› ̤¯ÚÈ Ó· Û˘ÌʈÓËıÔ‡Ó fiÏ· Την αποφασιστικÞτητά τουσ να επαναρχίσουν δοµηµένεσ διαπραγµατεύσεισ κατά τρÞπο που να εστιάζουν στην επίτευξη αποτελεσµάτων εξέφρασαν ο ΠρÞεδροσ τησ ∆ηµοκρατίασ Νίκοσ Αναστασιάδησ και ο Τουρκοκύπριοσ ηγέτησ Ντερβίσ Ερογλου στην κοινή διακήρυξή τουσ, την οποία ανέγνωσε η Ειδική ΑντιπρÞσωποσ του ΓΓ του ΟΗΕ στην Κύπρο Λίζα Μπάτενχαϊµ, µετά την ολοκλήρωση τησ χθεσινήσ συνάντησησ Αναστασιάδη-Ερογλου. Η κ. Μπάτενχαϊµ ανακοίνωσε Þτι οι δυο ηγέτεσ έχουν δώσει οδηγίεσ στουσ διαπραγµατευτέσ να έχουν την πρώτη τουσ συνάντηση αυτή την εβδοµάδα. Επιπλέον, στην κοινή διακήρυξη αναφέρεται Þτι οι διαπραγµατεύσεισ βασίζονται στην αρχή πωσ τίποτε δεν έχει συµφωνηθεί µέχρι να συµφωνηθούν Þλα.

Η λύση θα βασίζεται σε µια δικοινοτική, διζωνική οµοσπονδία µε πολιτική ισÞτητα, Þπωσ καθορίζεται στα σχετικά ψηφίσµατα του Συµβουλίου Ασφαλείασ και τισ Συµφωνίεσ Υψηλού Επιπέδου. Αναφέρεται, επίσησ, Þτι οι ηγέτεσ θα έχουν ωσ στÞχο να φθάσουν σε διευθέτηση το συντοµÞτερο δυνατÞ και ακολούθωσ να πραγµατοποιήσουν χωριστά και ταυτÞχρονα δηµοψηφίσµατα. Ο ΠρÞεδροσ τησ ∆ηµοκρατίασ Νίκοσ Αναστασιάδησ, επιστρέφοντασ στο προεδρικÞ δήλωσε πωσ η κοινή δήλωση των ηγετών των δύο κοινοτήτων θέτει το πλαίσιο και τισ βασικέσ αρχέσ λύσησ, Þµωσ δεν αποτελεί την τελική λύση, αλλά την απαρχή µιασ επίπονησ προσπάθειασ για επίτευξη των επιθυµητών στÞχων.

ŒÓÙÔÓË ÂÚ¢ÓËÙÈ΋ ‰Ú·ÛÙËÚÈfiÙËÙ· ÛÙËÓ Î˘Úȷ΋ ∞√∑ Το Υπουργείο Εµπορίου και η Κυβέρνηση αποσυνδέουν τουσ στρατηγικούσ σχεδιασµούσ αξιοποίησησ των κοιτασµάτων υδρογονανθράκων στην κυπριακή ΑΟΖ και για την ενδιάµεση λύση έλευσησ φυσικού αερίου, απÞ τισ Þποιεσ εξελίξεισ στο ΚυπριακÞ και προχωρούν, διαβεβαίωσε χθεσ ο ΥπουργÞσ Ενέργειασ, Εµπορίου Βιοµηχανίασ και Τουρισµού Γιώργοσ Λακκοτρύπησ, την Κοινοβουλευτική Επιτροπή Εµπορίου. Ενηµερώνοντασ την Επιτροπή για τισ εξελίξεισ για το θέµα των υδρογονανθράκων, ο κ. Λακκοτρύπησ ανέφερε Þτι το 2014 και στισ αρχέσ του 2015 θα υπάρξει έντονη ερευνη-

τική δραστηριÞτητα στην κυπριακή ΑΟΖ, εξηγώντασ Þτι οι έρευνεσ θα είναι καθοριστικέσ ώστε να προχωρήσει η κατασκευή του χερσαίου τερµατικού υγροποίησησ, καθώσ µε τα κοιτάσµατα του «Αφροδίτη» το τερµατικÞ δεν είναι βιώσιµο. Ùπωσ είπε στην Επιτροπή ο ΥπουργÞσ Ενέργειασ, εντÞσ Φεβρουαρίου ο ΥπουργÞσ Εξωτερικών Ιωάννησ Κασουλίδησ θα µεταβεί στο Ισραήλ σε µια προσπάθεια να ξεκαθαριστούν κατά το δυνατÞ οι προθέσεισ τησ γείτονοσ χώρασ αναφορικά µε την αξιοποίηση των κοιτασµάτων του Λεβιάθαν, που σχετίζεται µε την απÞφαση για την κατασκευή του τερµατικού.

Σε δήλωση µετά τη συνεδρία, ερωτηθείσ εάν οι εξελίξεισ στο ΚυπριακÞ επηρεάζουν τον ενεργειακÞ σχεδιασµÞ, ο ΥπουργÞσ Ενέργειασ είπε πωσ είναι κάθετοσ Þτι οι εξελίξεισ, οι δραστηριÞτητεσ ή οι σχεδιασµοί που έχουµε δροµολογήσει θα συνεχιστούν απρÞσκοπτα, τÞσο σε Þ,τι αφορά τισ ερευνητικέσ δραστηριÞτητεσ και σε Þ,τι αφορά τουσ σχεδιασµούσ για την αξιοποίηση του φυσικού αερίου. Ο ΥπουργÞσ Ενέργειασ, αφού ανέφερε Þτι το κοίτασµα στο «Αφροδίτη» είναι πολύ µεγάλο και φθάνει τα 4 µε 5 τρισεκατοµµύρια πÞδια, ταυτÞχρονα διευκρίνισε Þτι δεν είναι αρκετÞ για να καταστήσει το χερσαίο τερµατικÞ βιώσιµο.

À¶√π∫: ™ËÌ·ÓÙÈΤ˜ ¯·Ï·ÚÒÛÂȘ ÛÙ· ÂÚÈÔÚÈÛÙÈο ̤ÙÚ· Σηµαντικέσ χαλαρώσεισ στα περιοριστικά µέτρα θα ανακοινωθούν απÞ την επÞµενη εβδοµάδα, σύµφωνα µε τον ΥπουργÞ Οικονοµικών Χάρη Γεωργιάδη. ΩστÞσο, ο κ. Γεωργιάδησ σηµείωσε Þτι παραµένει η πρÞκληση τησ διαχείρισησ των προβληµατικών δανείων, η οποία θα πρέπει να συνδυάζει, απÞ την µια, την ενίσχυση τησ δυνατÞτητασ είσπραξησ, µε την προστασία, απÞ την άλλη, των

βιώσιµων δανειζοµένων, που αντιµετωπίζουν πρÞσκαιρα προβλήµατα. Ο ΥπουργÞσ ανέφερε Þτι τα δηµÞσια οικονοµικά παραµένουν υπÞ έλεγχο κάτι που, Þπωσ είπε, επιβεβαιώνει την ορθÞτητα των σχεδιασµών και των αποφάσεων που έχουν ωσ σήµερα ληφθεί. Ερωτηθείσ κατά πÞσο υπάρχουν αλλαγέσ στο επικαιροποιηµένο µνηµÞνιο σε σχέση µε τα χρονοδιαγράµµατα των διαδικασιών είσπραξησ για τα Μη

Εξυπηρετούµενα ∆άνεια, ο κ. Γεωργιάδησ ανέφερε Þτι δεν υπάρχουν σηµαντικέσ αλλαγέσ γενικά σε αυτÞ το επικαιροποιηµένο µνηµÞνιο. Ανέφερε Þτι ισχύει Þ,τι ίσχυε και στισ προηγούµενεσ εκδοχέσ του Μνηµονίου χωρίσ καµιά διαφοροποίηση. Ερωτηθείσ για το ύψοσ τησ επÞµενησ δÞσησ, ο κ. Γεωργιάδησ είπε Þτι θα καθοριστεί στισ επÞµενεσ µέρεσ στη βάση και του ακριβούσ προσδιορισµού των αναγκών.

∏ ∂∆À∫ ÌfiÓË ÛÙȘ ‰È·Ú·ÁÌ·Ù‡ÛÂȘ Ì ÙËÓ ∆Ú. ∫‡ÚÔ˘ ΜÞνη τησ µε την ΕΤΥΚ θα διαπραγµατεύεται η Τράπεζα Κύπρου Þσον αφορά το προσωπικÞ ωσ αποτέλεσµα τησ αποχώρησήσ τησ απÞ τον ΚυπριακÞ ΕργοδοτικÞ Σύνδεσµο Τραπεζών (ΚΕΣΤ), σύµφωνα µε το ΚΥΠΕ. Στο µεταξύ, ο ΓενικÞσ ∆ιευθυντήσ του ΚΕΣΤ Μιχάλησ Καµµάσ επιβεβαίωσε Þτι έχει ληφθεί επιστολή αποχώρησησ τησ Τράπεζασ απÞ το σύνδεσµο αλλά δεν θέλησε να σχολιάσει περαιτέρω γιατί καταβάλλονται προσπάθειεσ για παραµονή του χρηµατοπι-

στωτικού οργανισµού στο σύνδεσµο. «Έχουµε πάρει επιστολή η οποία αναφέρεται σε αποχώρηση απÞ το Σύνδεσµο» επιβεβαίωσε ο κ. Καµµάσ κληθείσ απÞ το ΚΥΠΕ να επιβεβαιώσει δηµοσίευµα τησ Stockwatch για το θέµα. Απαντώντασ αν γίνονται διαβουλεύσεισ για µεταπειστεί η Τράπεζα Κύπρου ο κ. Καµµάσ ανέφερε Þτι «γίνονται αυτέσ οι προσπάθειεσ, οπÞτε προσ το παρÞν δεν θα ήθελα να κάνω οποιοδήποτε άλλο σχÞλιο».

¢È¿ıÂÛË ÔÈÎÔÓÔÌÈÎÒÓ Ï·ÌÙ‹ÚˆÓ Την παραχώρηση λαµπτήρων εξοικονÞµησησ ενέργειασ ζήτησε απÞ την Κυβέρνηση και την ΑΗΚ η Κοινοβουλευτική Επιτροπή Εµπορίου, αίτηµα που έγινε αποδεκτÞ σύµφωνα µε το Βουλευτή του ∆ΗΚΟ Άγγελο ΒÞτση. Η Επιτροπή συζήτησε χθεσ το θέµα σε σχέση µε την εξοικονÞµηση ενέργειασ και τη διαχείριση δηµοσίου χρήµατοσ. Ο κ. ΒÞτσησ είπε Þτι η Επιτροπή ενηµερώθηκε για το

σχέδιο τησ ΑΗΚ να τοποθετηθούν µέσω των ∆ήµων 60.000 λαµπτήρεσ led στον οδικÞ φωτισµÞ. Ο κ. ΒÞτσησ ανέφερε Þτι το πρÞγραµµα αναζητά χρηµατοδÞτη καθώσ έχει κÞστοσ 16,6 εκ. ευρώ και η αναζήτηση χρηµατοδÞτη έφερε το πρÞγραµµα µπροστά σε απαγορευτικά επιτÞκια 13%. Καταλήγοντασ στισ δηλώσεισ του, είπε Þτι θα γίνουν ενέργειεσ ώστε το πρÞγραµµα να εφαρµοστεί µε ιδιώτεσ επενδυτέσ.

K·È Ì ‰fiÛÂȘ ÔÈ ·ÏȤ˜ ¿‰ÂȘ ΢ÎÏÔÊÔÚ›·˜ Νοµοσχέδιο για µηνιαία πληρωµή παλαιών οφειλών σε τέλη κυκλοφορίασ επεξεργάζεται το Υπουργείο Συγκοινωνιών και Έργων και το οποίο θα ψηφιστεί άµεσα. Οπωσ αναφέρει σε ανακοίνωσή του το Υπουργείο, επεξεργάζεται νοµοσχέδιο µε βάση το οποίο θα προβλέπεται: (α) η δυνατÞτητα κατÞχου οχήµατοσ ο οποίοσ χρωστά τέλη κυκλοφορίασ προηγούµενων ετών να τα καταβάλει σε δώδεκα ισÞποσεσ µηνιαίεσ δÞσεισ, (β) η δυνατÞτητα κατÞχου οχήµατοσ να καταβάλει τα τέλη κυκλοφορίασ για το έτοσ 2014 χωρίσ να είναι αναγκασµένοσ να καταβάλει ταυτÞχρονα τα τέλη προηγούµενων ετών εάν υπάρχουν, νοουµένου Þτι αυτά θα καταβληθούν σε δώδεκα ισÞποσεσ µηνιαίεσ δÞσεισ. ΠρÞθεση του Υπουργείου Συγκοινωνιών και Έργων, προστίθεται, είναι να προωθήσει τάχιστα τισ διαδικασίεσ, µε σκοπÞ το νοµοσχέδιο να ψηφιστεί σε νÞµο πριν τη λήξη τησ προθεσµίασ για την ανανέωση των αδειών κυκλοφορίασ. “Η σχετική τροποποίηση τησ νοµοθεσίασ προωθείται προκειµένου να διευκολυνθούν χιλιάδεσ συµπολίτεσ µασ

µε παλαιέσ οφειλέσ, να µην στερηθούν τησ χρήσησ του οχήµατÞσ τουσ”, καταλήγει η ανακοίνωση.

ª¤¯ÚÈ ·Ú¯¤˜ ª·ÚÙ›Ô˘ Ë ·Ó·Ó¤ˆÛË ·‰ÂÈÒÓ Εν τω µεταξύ παράταση στο χρÞνο καταβολήσ των τελών κυκλοφορίασ µέχρι την 1η εβδοµάδα του Μάρτη συµφώνησαν τα κÞµµατα κατά τη σύσκεψη αρχηγών ή εκπροσώπων των κοµµάτων. Την παράταση εισηγήθηκε το ΑΚΕΛ και υιοθετήθηκε απÞ τα υπÞλοιπα Κοινοβουλευτικά ΚÞµµατα. Ùπωσ ανέφερε ο ΚοινοβουλευτικÞσ ΕκπρÞσωποσ του ΑΚΕΛ Γιάννοσ Λαµάρησ η εισήγηση έγινε αφού διαπιστώθηκε Þτι υπήρξε καθυστέρηση στην καταβολή επιδοµάτων σε πολλούσ δικαιούχουσ και για αυτÞ κρίνεται σκÞπιµο να δοθεί η παράταση ώστε να µπορέσουν να πληρώσουν τα τέλη.

Πηγέσ απÞ την τράπεζα ανέφεραν Þτι ο λÞγοσ που πάρθηκε η απÞφαση εξÞδου απÞ τον Σύνδεσµο είναι Þτι αυτή τη στιγµή οι τράπεζεσ στην Κύπρο είναι σε διαφορετική φάση άρα δεν µπορεί κάποιοσ να διαπραγµατευτεί για Þλουσ κάτι κοινÞ. Απαντώντασ σε ερώτηση ωσ προσ τι σηµαίνει αυτή η απÞφαση για το προσωπικÞ οι ίδιεσ πηγέσ σηµείωσαν Þτι η τράπεζα θα διαπραγµατεύεται πλέον µÞνη τησ µε την ΕΤΥΚ. «ΑυτÞ είναι το άµεσο αποτέλεσµα», πρÞσθεσαν.

¶ÚÔÙÂÚ·ÈfiÙËÙ· ÁÈ· ÙÔÓ ∫√∆ Ô ·ıÏËÙÈÎfi˜ ÙÔ˘ÚÈÛÌfi˜ ∆υνατÞ χαρτί στο χαρτοφυλάκιο των εναλλακτικών µορφών τουρισµού, χαρακτήρισε τον αθλητικÞ τουρισµÞ ο ΓενικÞσ ∆ιευθυντήσ του ΚΟΤ Μάριοσ Χαννίδησ, σε εκδήλωση παρουσίασησ των δράσεων για τον ΑθλητικÞ ΤουρισµÞ που πραγµατοποίησε ο ΚυπριακÞσ ΟργανισµÞσ Τουρισµού στο ΣυνεδριακÞ Κέντρο «Φιλοξενία». Στο χαιρετισµÞ του, o ΓενικÞσ ∆ιευθυντήσ του ΚΟΤ κ. Μάριοσ Χαννίδησ, αναφέρθηκε στην σηµασία του τουρισµού για την επανεκκίνηση τησ οικονοµίασ και ανέφερε Þτι ο αθλητικÞσ τουρισµÞσ συµβαδίζει άρρηκτα µε τισ αρχέσ τησ αειφÞρου ανάπτυξησ. ΑπÞ την πλευρά τησ, η ∆ιευθύντρια Τουρισµού Τµήµατοσ Στρατηγικήσ και Μελετών του ΚΟΤ Αννίτα ∆ηµητριάδου, στην παρουσίαση τησ, ανέφερε Þτι ο αθλητικÞσ τουρισµÞσ αποτελεί προτεραιÞτητα τησ Στρατηγικήσ Τουρισµού 2011 – 2015 γιατί αναγνωρίζεται Þτι µπορεί να διαδραµατίσει σηµαντικÞ ρÞλο στην επίτευξη των στÞχων τησ. ΑναφερÞµενη στα στοχευµένα τµήµατα τησ αγοράσ, είπε Þτι αυτά είναι ο επαγγελµατικÞσ αθλητισµÞσ και η προσέλκυση οµάδων και ατÞµων οι οποίοι ασχολούνται ενεργά µε ένα άθληµα για ψυχαγωγικούσ κυρίωσ λÞγουσ.



∂Ó·ÏÏ·ÎÙÈΤ˜ ÂÂÓ‰‡ÛÂȘ; ∞ÓÙÒÓ˘ §Ô˚˙Ô˘ ∞ÓÙÒÓ˘ §Ô›˙Ô˘ F.R.I.C.S. & ™˘ÓÂÚÁ¿Ù˜ §Ù‰, ∂ÎÙÈÌËÙ¤˜ ∞ÎÈÓ‹ÙˆÓ & ¢È·¯ÂÈÚÈÛÙ¤˜ ŒÚÁˆÓ ∞Ó¿Ù˘Í˘

Ùπωσ είναι αντιληπτÞ οι επενδύσεισ σε ακίνητα έχουν µειωθεί σε ελάχιστα επίπεδα απÞ το παρελθÞν. Ενδείξεισ αποτελούν και οι δηλώσεισ αγοράσ ακινήτων στο ΚτηµατολÞγιο και ο πίνακασ είναι ενδεικτικÞσ. Ωσ εκ τούτου διερωτÞµαστε ποιοσ θα αγοράσει τα υπÞ εκποίηση ακίνητα Þταν ο αριθµÞσ τουσ σήµερα σε (N.P.L.) µη εξυπηρετούµενα δάνεια ξεπερνούν τισ 6.000 ωσ ελάχιστο, ενώ υπάρχουν ακÞµη 10.000 µονάδεσ προσ πώληση στην αγορά. Μασ είναι δύσκολο να αντιληφθούµε την µη ύπαρξη οργάνωσησ εκ µέρουσ ορισµένων χρηµατοδοτών που θα πρέπει να ετοιµάζονται για τισ εκποιήσεισ, Þπωσ η διευθέτηση/ύπαρξη αδειών, παρανοµίεσ, τυχÞν άλλεσ δυσκολίεσ που υπάρχουν (π.χ. µη εξασφάλιση καλυπτικήσ άδειασ, πιστοποιητικού τελικήσ έγκρισησ κλπ). Κατά την άποψη µασ µέχρι ένα ακίνητο που δεν έχει τίτλο φθάσει στο στάδιο του τίτλου, χρειάζονται και πολλά χρÞνια και δουλειά που ίσωσ να ξεπερνά τουσ 12-24 µήνεσ. Ασφαλώσ και εάν κάποιοσ χρηµατοδÞτησ προχωρήσει µε την εκποίηση ενÞσ έργου/ µονάδασ ωσ έχει µε Þλεσ τισ παραλείψεισ, θα αποθαρρύνει άµεσα τουσ ξένουσ επενδυτέσ (τουσ είναι αδιανÞητο τώρα πωσ θα αγοράσουν παράνοµα κτίρια) και θα απογοητεύσει επίσησ τουσ πιθανούσ ντÞπιουσ που υπάρχουν. Κατ’ εµάσ ο κάθε χρηµατοδÞτησ θα έπρεπε ήδη να έχει οργανώσει την δική του οµάδα και να βοηθήσει τον δανειζÞµενο του στην ετοιµασία Þσο το δυνατÞ καλύτερα των συνθηκών έκδοσησ τίτλων και εκποίησησ. Οι περισσÞτεροι απÞ εµάσ έχουν την εντύπωση Þτι θα κατακλυστούµε απÞ ενδιαφέρον ξένων για επενδύσεισ σε ακίνητα. Λυπούµαστε να σασ διαψεύσουµε διÞτι το

υπάρχων ενδιαφέρον είναι πολύ περιορισµένο. Ùσον αφορά τα ακίνητα υπάρχει κάποιο ενδιαφέρον για πολύ χαµηλού κÞστουσ διαµερίσµατα, τÞσο απÞ ξένουσ και ντÞπιουσ, Þσο και αγοραστέσ κυρίωσ κατοικιών σε πιο ψηλά επίπεδα. Η δεύτερη κατηγορία επενδυτών προέρχονται απÞ ιδιοκτήτεσ εµποδισµένων καταθέσεων τησ Τράπεζασ Κύπρου που φοβούµενοι ή πιστεύοντασ Þτι παρά να είναι στην τράπεζα τα χρήµατα τουσ, καλύτερα να είναι σε ένα ακίνητο, µετατρέπουν τισ καταθέσεισ τουσ σε ακίνητα (µε ανταλλαγή χρεών). Υπάρχουν και άλλεσ µορφέσ επενδυτών που τισ µαθαίνουµε και εµείσ τώρα. Η εξαγορά εµποδισµένων καταθέσεων τησ Τράπεζασ Κύπρου απÞ ξένουσ οίκουσ σε ένα ποσοστÞ γύρω στο 95% πληρωτέα τοισ µετρητοίσ και στο εξωτερικÞ. Ο αγοραστήσ/επενδυτήσ που θα πληρώσει µÞνο το 95% τησ κατάθεσησ του ιδιοκτήτη, θα διατηρήσει το δικαίωµα του πωλητή Þσον αφορά την είσπραξη τÞκων και το δικαίωµα στην έκδοση των µετοχών. Ο κάθε επενδυτήσ (κυρίωσ ξένοι οίκοι) ζυγίζει τισ απαιτήσεισ του ανάλογα. Τσέχοσ µασ προσέφερε 87% των καταθέσεων, άλλοσ 94%, ενώ το κύριο εµπÞδιο αποτελεί η ιδιοκτησία των µελλοντικών εκδιδοµένων µετοχών. Ορισµένοι δίδουν µεγάλη σηµασία στην µελλοντική αξία των µετοχών αυτών και άλλοι Þχι – ανάλογα µε πωσ πιστεύει Þτι η Τράπεζα Κύπρου θα εξελιχθεί. ΑπÞ την περιρρέουσα ατµÞσφαιρα τησ οικονοµίασ και συζητώντασ το θέµα µεταξύ µασ, το γενικÞ πιστεύω είναι Þτι η Ε.Ε. δεν θα αφήσει την Τράπεζα Κύπρου αβοήθητη και ωσ εκ τούτου το µέλλον τησ είναι θετικÞ (σίγουρα Þχι χειρÞτερο απÞ σήµερα). Η εµπιστοσύνη ή Þχι στην τράπεζα θα φανεί σύντοµα µε το τι θα απογίνουν οι απελευθερωµένεσ καταθέσεισ. Οι επενδυτικοί οίκοι αυτοί λοιπÞν του χρηµατικού τοµέα αναµένουν µια απÞδοση τησ τάξησ του 30% (εκπτώσεισ και τÞκοι και αξία µετοχών) σε 24 µήνεσ. ΕπανερχÞµενοι στον τοµέα των ακινήτων υπάρχει και µια σοβαρή ζήτηση απÞ ξένουσ

¢ÂÎÙ¤˜ ·ÈÙ‹ÛÂȘ ÁÈ· Â›‰ÔÌ· Ù¤ÎÓÔ˘ Î·È ÌÔÓÔÁÔÓÂ˚΋˜ ÔÈÎÔÁ¤ÓÂÈ·˜ Τα έντυπα αιτήσεων για την παροχή επιδÞµατοσ τέκνου και µονογονεϊκήσ οικογένειασ για το 2014 είναι διαθέσιµα στο κοινÞ απÞ τη ∆ευτέρα, 10 Φεβρουαρίου, σύµφωνα µε την Υπηρεσία Χορηγιών και Επιδοµάτων του Υπουργείου Οικονοµικών. Το έντυπο αίτησησ για το επίδοµα τέκνου και το επίδοµα µονογονεϊκήσ οικογένειασ (ενιαίο έντυπο) µπορεί να εξασφαλιστεί απÞ τα γραφεία τησ Υπηρεσίασ, το γραφείο εξυπηρέτησησ στο Υπουργείο Οικονοµικών, τα Κέντρα Εξυπηρέτησησ του Πολίτη, καθώσ και απÞ την ιστοσελίδα του Υπουργείου Οικονοµικών: Επισηµαίνεται Þτι, σύµφωνα µε τουσ περί Παροχήσ ΕπιδÞµατοσ Τέκνου ΝÞµουσ του 2002 έωσ 2012, δικαίωµα σε επίδοµα τέκνου για το 2014, έχει οικογένεια εφÞσον το ετήσιο ακαθάριστο οικογενειακÞ εισÞδηµα κατά το 2013, δεν υπερβαίνει τισ 49.000 ευρώ για οικογένειεσ µε ένα εξαρτώµενο τέκνο, και τισ 59.000 ευρώ για οικογένειεσ µε δύο ή περισσÞτερα εξαρτώµενα τέκνα. ΕπιπρÞσθετα, δικαίωµα σε επίδοµα µονογονεϊκήσ οικογένειασ έχει οικογένεια εφÞσον το ετήσιο ακαθάριστο οικογενειακÞ εισÞδηµα κατά το 2013 δεν υπερβαίνει τισ 49.000 ευρώ. Παράλληλα και ανεξαρτήτωσ του ύψουσ των οικογενειακού εισοδήµατοσ, επίδοµα τέκνου δεν παρέχεται σε οικογένεια τησ οποίασ η συνολική αξία, σε τρέχουσεσ τιµέσ, των περιουσιακών τησ στοιχείων, συµπεριλαµβανοµένων των ακινήτων, µετοχών, οµολÞγων, χρεογράφων και καταθέσεων, υπερβαίνει το 1.200.000 ευρώ. Σηµειώνεται Þτι οι οικογένειεσ µε τρία ή περισσÞτερα τέκνα καθώσ και οι µονογονεϊκέσ οικογένειεσ, που πληρώνονται σε µηνιαία βάση, θα τύχουν προτεραιÞτητασ. Οι οικογένειεσ µε ένα ή δύο τέκνα παρακαλούνται Þπωσ υποβάλλουν την αίτησή τουσ µεταγενέστερα, εφÞσον το επίδοµα θα τουσ καταβληθεί στο τέλοσ του χρÞνου, Þπωσ αναφέρεται στην ανακοίνωση.

οι οποίοι αναζητούν κεντρικά γραφεία µοντέρνα (High tech) ενοικιαζÞµενα µε µακροχρÞνια συµβÞλαια (τουλάχιστον 10 χρÞνια) µε σχεδÞν Þλα τα έξοδα πάνω στουσ ενοικιαστέσ και µε αυξήσεισ ενοικίου γύρω στο 5% ανά 2-3 χρÞνια. Υφιστάµενοι ιδιοκτήτεσ µπορούν να παραµείνουν ωσ ενοικιαστέσ µε το ανάλογο ενοίκιο. Η ζητούµενη απÞδοση είναι µεταξύ 6%-7% επί τησ αξίασ του ακινήτου. Γίνεται αντιληπτή η διαφορά µεταξύ τÞκων κατάθεσησ στο εξωτερικÞ τησ τάξησ του 1%-2% και τησ επένδυσησ σε ακίνητα µε το ζητούµενο επίπεδο του 6%-7%, επίπεδο το οποίο δείχνει το ρίσκο τησ επένδυσησ που πιστεύουν Þτι έχουν οι ξένοι επενδυτέσ στην Κύπρο. ∆υστυχώσ σε µια ∆ηµοκρατία, τα πάντα κινούνται µε πολύ αργÞ ρυθµÞ και έτσι αποφάσεισ/εκτέλεση έργων δεν µπορούν να γίνουν απÞ την µια ηµέρα στην άλλη. Πέρασε σχεδÞν ένασ χρÞνοσ για να αποφασισθεί ποιοι οίκοι θα κάνουν την µελέτη του καζίνου και ίσωσ ακÞµη 1-2 χρÞνια για να καταλήξουµε στον επενδυτή και ακÞµη 2-4 χρÞνια για την εκτέλεση του έργου. Τα ξενοδοχεία µασ δείχνουν µια θετική πορεία στην οποία µασ βοήθησε η κατάσταση στην Μέση Ανατολή και τώρα, ίσωσ, τησ Τουρκίασ, αλλά παρ’ Þλησ τησ αυξητικήσ πορείασ του τουρισµού και τησ αύξησησ πληρÞτητασ, παραµένουν µια επένδυση σχεδÞν ψηλού ρίσκου µε αποδÞσεισ Þχι ψηλÞτερα του 7%. Προσ τούτο δεν βοηθά η συνεχήσ αβεβαιÞτητα τησ διατήρησησ των Κυπριακών Αερογραµµών και του

ελάχιστου αριθµού ∆ηµÞσιων υπαλλήλων που έχουν στα χέρια τουσ την ύπαρξη των αερογραµµών στην Κύπρο (ίδε ελεγκτέσ εναέριασ κυκλοφορίασ, ακατονÞµαστη σύγχυση για το FIR, διαµαρτυρίεσ πιλÞτων κλπ). Παραµένει Þµωσ ο τουρισµÞσ µια καλή και ίσωσ σταθερή πηγή εισοδήµατοσ που χρειάζεται Þµωσ µια συνεχή προσπάθεια προσέλκυσησ των ξένων. Προσ τούτο είναι αξιοπρÞσεκτη η προσπάθεια των πÞλεων ωσ οµάδων πλέον προσέλκυσησ ξένων - ενώ ο ανερχÞµενοσ τουρισµÞσ στισ τουρκοκρατούµενεσ περιοχέσ θα πρέπει να προσεχθεί. Εναλλακτικέσ επενδύσεισ λοιπÞν και σε µια άλλη «ελαφριά» µορφή επαναλαµβάνουµε τι µασ ανέφερε ένασ φίλοσ τησ στήλησ αυτήσ. «Υπάρχουν εναλλακτικέσ επενδύσεισ, η µια βρίσκεται στην κατασκευή ιδιωτικών χώρων φύλαξησ safe boxes, η άλλη στην εγκατάσταση συστηµάτων συναγερµού και η τρίτη στην εκπαίδευση σκύλων προστασίασ!!!». Οι ξένοι επενδυτέσ δεν ενδιαφέρονται Þπωσ νοµίζουν οι πλείστοι εδώ Þτι θα αγοράζουν µεµονωµένεσ µονάδεσ έστω και στην µισή τιµή (για να τισ κάνουν τι – σε ποιουσ θα τισ πουλήσουν), ούτε για οικÞπεδα, ούτε για χωράφια, ενώ οι πολυδιαφηµιζÞµενεσ γεωργικέσ επενδύσεισ, δεν έχει προσελκύσει ιδιαίτερα την νεÞτερη γενιά, κυρίωσ λÞγω σκληρήσ δουλειάσ, αλλά και µη ύπαρξησ κεφαλαίων, ασυνάρτητεσ κλιµατολογικέσ συνθήκεσ και στο τέλοσ αβέβαιη αγορά προϊÞντων προσ διάθεση.

¶ÚÔÛÙ·ÙÂ˘Ì¤Ó˜ ·fi ÛÂÈÛÌfi ÔÈ Ó¤Â˜ ÔÈÎÔ‰Ô̤˜ ÛÙËÓ ∫‡ÚÔ Το επίπεδο αντισεισµικήσ προστασίασ των νέων οικοδοµών στην Κύπρο είναι ιδιαίτερα αυξηµένο, αφού απÞ την 1η Ιανουαρίου 2012 ισχύουν αυστηρÞτερεσ πρÞνοιεσ για την ανάλυση και το σχεδιασµÞ των κατασκευαστικών έργων µε την υποχρεωτική εφαρµογή του ευρωπαϊκού κώδικα, σύµφωνα µε ανακοίνωση που εξέδωσε ο Σύλλογοσ Πολιτικών Μηχανικών Κύπρου, µε αφορµή την σεισµική δραστηριÞτητα που καταγράφεται στην Κεφαλονιά. Σε ανακοίνωσή του ο Σύλλογοσ αναφέρει Þτι «ικανοποιητικÞ µπορεί να θεωρηθεί και το επίπεδο αντισεισµικήσ προστασίασ των οικοδοµών που ανεγέρθηκαν µετά την εφαρµογή του Κυπριακού Αντισεισµικού Κανονισµού το 1993 και τη θέσπιση τησ υποχρεωτικήσ επίβλεψησ κατά τη διάρκεια ανέγερσησ µιασ οικοδοµήσ το 1998». ΩστÞσο, «προβληµατισµÞσ και ανησυχία υπάρχει για τισ οικοδοµέσ που έχουν σχεδιαστεί και ανεγερθεί πριν την εφαρµογή οποιουδήποτε αντισεισµικού κανονισµού, ανησυχία γίνεται εντονÞτερη Þταν σε αυτέσ γίνονται προσθήκεσ (ιδιαίτερα καθ’ ύψοσ) οι οποίεσ ενδεχοµένωσ να µειώνουν ακÞµη περισσÞτερο την ικανÞτητα τουσ να ανταπεξέλθουν σε ένα σεισµÞ». Επίσησ, «προβληµατισµÞσ υπάρχει για τισ οικοδοµέσ που τροποποιούνται και αλλάζουν χρήση χωρίσ να γίνεται επαρκήσ αξιολÞγηση τησ κατάστασησ του φέροντοσ οργανισµού και χωρίσ να γίνεται ο ανάλογοσ έλεγχοσ στατικήσ επάρκειασ». Για το Σύλλογο Πολιτικών Μηχανικών Κύπρου «δεν τίθεται θέµα πανικού, αλλά επιβάλλεται η έγκαιρη λήψη ορθών και επαρκών µέτρων Þπωσ είναι «ο έλεγχοσ του επιπέδου αντισεισµικήσ προστασίασ Þλων των οικοδοµών δηµÞσιασ χρήσησ, που έχουν ανεγερθεί πριν την εφαρµογή του Κυπριακού Αντισεισµικού Κανονισµού». Επίσησ θα πρέπει να γίνει εκστρατεία επιθεώρησησ παλαιών οικοδοµών, οπτικÞσ έλεγχοσ και εντοπισµÞσ ευάλωτων σε σεισµÞ κατασκευών, νοµοθετική ρύθµιση και καθορισµÞσ διαδικασιών για υποχρεωτικÞ περιοδικÞ έλεγχο Þλων

¶ÚÔ‚ÏËÌ·ÙÈÛÌfi˜ ÁÈ· ÙȘ ÔÈÎÔ‰Ô̤˜ Ô˘ ·ÓÂÁ¤ÚıËÎ·Ó ÚÈÓ ·fi ÙËÓ ÂÊ·ÚÌÔÁ‹ ÙÔ˘ ·ÓÙÈÛÂÈÛÌÈÎÔ‡ ηÓÔÓÈÛÌÔ‡ των κτιρίων, δηµÞσιων και ιδιωτικών και ολοκλήρωση του θεσµικού πλαισίου που διέπει τισ προσθήκεσ σε υφιστάµενεσ οικοδοµέσ». Θέση του ΣυλλÞγου Πολιτικών Μηχανικών είναι Þτι το κοινÞ πρέπει να ενηµερωθεί απÞ την Πολιτεία και απÞ τουσ Πολιτικούσ Μηχανικούσ «για τα πλεονεκτήµατα τησ αντισεισµικήσ ενίσχυσησ των οικοδοµών, είτε αυτέσ θα δεχθούν προσθήκη είτε Þχι». «Σε ένα ισχυρÞ σεισµÞ, οικοδοµέσ που δεν έχουν σχεδιαστεί για να παρέχουν αντισεισµική προστασία, ακÞµη και αν δεν καταρρεύσουν, είναι πολύ πιθανÞ να υποστούν ζηµιέσ που δεν θα µπορούν να αποκατασταθούν», αναφέρει ο Σύλλογοσ Πολιτικών Μηχανικών.



4 | ΕΙ∆ΗΣΕΙΣ |

∂∫: ∞ÏÏ·Á¤˜ ÛÙ· ‰ÈηÈÒÌ·Ù· ÙˆÓ ·ÂÚÔÔÚÈÎÒÓ ÂÈ‚·ÙÒÓ Οι επιβάτεσ που ταξιδεύουν αεροπορικώσ θα λαµβάνουν πιο εύκολα αποζηµίωση στην περίπτωση καθυστέρησησ τησ πτήσησ και καθήλωσήσ τουσ στο αεροδρÞµιο, σύµφωνα µε νοµοσχέδιο που ενέκρινε το Κοινοβούλιο στο στάδιο τησ πρώτησ ανάγνωσησ. Οι αεροπορικέσ εταιρείεσ θα υπÞκεινται επίσησ σε σαφείσ κανÞνεσ σχετικά µε τον τρÞπο αντιµετώπισησ των καταγγελιών των επιβατών. Σύµφωνα µε τουσ αναθεωρηµένουσ κανÞνεσ οι αεροµεταφορείσ θα πρέπει να υποδεικνύουν µε σαφήνεια έναν υπεύθυνο, σε κάθε αερολιµένα, που θα πληροφορεί και θα βοηθά τουσ επιβάτεσ σχετικά µε τα δικαιώµατά τουσ και τισ διαδικασίεσ υποβολήσ καταγγελιών, παροχήσ βοήθειασ, αποζηµίωσησ και µεταφοράσ σε άλλεσ πτήσεισ. Οι επιβάτεσ θα µπορούν επίσησ να υποβάλλουν καταγγελίεσ, πχ. για ζηµία ή απώλεια αποσκευών. Σε περίπτωση καθυστέρησησ µιασ πτήσησ, ο επιβάτησ θα πρέπει να ενηµερώνεται για την κατάσταση αλλά και τη δυνατÞτητα µεταφοράσ µε άλλη πτήση, αµέσωσ µÞλισ οι εν λÞγω πληροφορίεσ καταστούν διαθέσιµεσ, και σε κάθε περίπτωση πριν απÞ την παρέλευση 30 λεπτών απÞ την προγραµµατισµένη ώρα αναχώρησησ. Το εν λÞγω νοµοσχέδιο στοχεύει να διασφαλίσει Þτι δεν θα παρεµποδίζεται η πρÞσβαση στο σκάφοσ σε επιβάτεσ που διαθέτουν εισιτήριο µετ’ επιστροφήσ, αλλά δεν έχουν χρησιµοποιήσει το εισιτήριο στο πρώτο σκέλοσ τησ µετάβασησ. Οι πληροφορίεσ σχετικά µε τα επιτρεπÞµενα Þρια των αποσκευών θα πρέπει να αναφέρονται σαφώσ απÞ την αρχή

νεσ περιστάσεισ που προκάλεσαν την ακύρωση ή την καθυστέρηση. Στον εξαντλητικÞ κατάλογο περιστάσεων που θεωρούνται ωσ έκτακτεσ συγκαταλέγονται η βλάβη του σκάφουσ λÞγω πρÞσκρουσησ πτηνών, οι πολιτικέσ αναταραχέσ και οι απρÞβλεπτεσ εργατικέσ διαφορέσ. Σε περίπτωση έκτακτων περιστάσεων που διαρκούν πολύ καιρÞ, Þπωσ το σύννεφο τέφρασ απÞ το ισλανδικÞ ηφαίστειο το 2010, η συνολική διάρκεια του καταλύµατοσ που θα πρέπει να πληρώνει ο εκάστοτε αεροµεταφορέασ περιορίζεται το πολύ σε 5 διανυκτερεύσεισ.


τησ διαδικασίασ κράτησησ. Ο κάθε επιβάτησ θα µπορεί να έχει µαζί του στο αεροπλάνο, χωρίσ χρέωση, ένα πανωφÞρι, µια τσάντα και µια σακούλα µε ψώνια απÞ το αεροδρÞµιο, πέρα απÞ τη χειραποσκευή που δικαιούται. Σε περίπτωση που ο αεροµεταφορέασ δεν παρέχει εντÞσ διµήνου απάντηση σε κάποιον που υποβάλλει καταγγελία, θεωρείται Þτι έχει αποδεχθεί τισ αξιώσεισ του επιβάτη. Ùταν η αεροπορική εταιρία επικαλείται την ύπαρξη έκτακτων περιστάσεων, θα πρέπει να ενηµερώνει στη - γραπτή - επεξήγησή τησ προσ τον επιβάτη για τισ συγκεκριµέ-

Προκειµένου να µη µένουν καθηλωµένοι στα αεροδρÞµια οι επιβάτεσ σε περίπτωση πτώχευσησ µιασ αεροπορικήσ εταιρίασ, οι αεροµεταφορείσ θα πρέπει να αποδεικνύουν Þτι έχουν λάβει Þλα τα απαραίτητα µέτρα, Þπωσ η ασφάλιση ή η δηµιουργία ενÞσ ταµείου εγγυήσεων, ώστε να εξασφαλίζουν, κατά περίπτωση, στουσ επιβάτεσ την παροχή φροντίδασ, την επιστροφή χρηµάτων ή τη µεταφορά µε άλλη πτήση. Τέλοσ οι εθνικέσ αρχέσ επιβολήσ των κρατών µελών θα πρέπει να διαθέτουν επαρκή εξουσία ώστε να επιβάλλουν ουσιαστικέσ κυρώσεισ σε περίπτωση παραβάσεων των δικαιωµάτων των επιβατών απÞ τουσ αεροµεταφορείσ. Θα πρέπει επίσησ να αξιολογούν τισ εκθέσεισ των αεροµεταφορέων σχετικά µε το πώσ έδρασαν στισ περιπτώσεισ καθυστερήσεων ή µαταιώσεων πτήσεων.

ª¤¯ÚÈ ÙȘ 22 ª·ÚÙ›Ô˘ ÔÈ Û˘Á¯ˆÓ‡ÛÂȘ ÙˆÓ ™¶∂ Ολοκληρώθηκε το περασµένο Σάββατο 8 Φεβρουαρίου η νέα συγχώνευση ΣΠΙ, στο πλαίσιο του Σχεδίου Αναδιάρθρωσησ του Συνεργατικού Πιστωτικού Τοµέα, Þπωσ αναφέρει ανακοίνωση τησ Συνεργατικήσ Κεντρικήσ Τράπεζασ. Η ΣΠΕ Αλληλεγγύησ αποδέχτηκε τισ ΣΠΕ Αθηαίνου, ΣΠΕ Περιοχών Σταυροβουνίου Λευκάρων και ΣΠΕ Λειβαδιών Λάρνακασ. Η νέα οντÞτητα φέρει το Þνοµα ΣΠΕ Αλληλεγγύησ και εδρεύει στην Αραδίππου. Το σύνολο του ενεργητικού τησ ανέρχεται στα 740 εκ. ευρώ και έχει πέραν των 104,000 πελατών. Αποµένουν άλλεσ τέσσερισ συγχωνεύσεισ µέχρι την

ολοκλήρωση τουσ στισ 22 Μαρτίου 2014. Η επÞµενη συγχώνευση θα πραγµατοποιηθεί το Σάββατο 15 Φεβρουαρίου, µε το ΣυνεργατικÞ Ταµιευτήριο Αµµοχώστου να αποδέχεται τισ ΣΠΕ Κοντέασ και η ΣΠΕ Συνεργασίασ Κιτίου -Περβολιών - Τερσεφάνου – Μενεού, το Σ.Τ. Λάρνακασ και το ΣυνεργατικÞ ΟργανισµÞ Πρωτοβουλίασ Γυναικών Κύπρου Λτδ.

€5.000 ÚfiÛÙÈÌÔ ÁÈ· Ù· 6 ̤ÏË Ù˘ ™¶∂ ∫˘ÂÚÔ‡ÓÙ·˜ Εν τω µεταξύ χρηµατική ποινή ύψουσ 5 χιλιάδων ευρώ επέβαλε το ΕπαρχιακÞ ∆ικαστήριο Λεµεσού σε κάθε ένα

απÞ τα έξι µέλη τησ επιτροπείασ τησ ΣΠΕ Κυπερούντασ (νυν ΣΠΕ ΤροÞδουσ), τα οποία κρίθηκαν την περασµένη Πέµπτη ένοχα για παρακοή δικαστικού διατάγµατοσ που αφορούσε την επαναπρÞσληψη του Γραµµατέα τησ ΣΠΕ, ο οποίοσ επέστρεψε ήδη στα καθήκοντά του. Με την επαναπρÞσληψη του, ο Γραµµατέασ τησ ΣΠΕ ΤροÞδουσ υπέγραψε τα σχετικά έγγραφα για ολοκλήρωση τησ συγχώνευσησ τησ ΣΠΕ Κυπερούντασ µε άλλα συνεργατικά ιδρύµατα τησ περιοχήσ, θέτοντασ έτσι τέρµα στισ ανησυχίεσ για τη νοµιµÞτητα τησ ΣΠΕ ΤροÞδουσ, η οποία συστάθηκε στο πλαίσιο τησ µνηµονιακήσ µασ υποχρέωσησ για αναδιάρθρωση του Συνεργατισµού.

250,000 ÙÔ˘Ú›ÛÙ˜ ÛÙË §ÂÌÂÛfi ÙÔ 2013 Η ΛεµεσÞσ εξελίσσεται τα τελευταία χρÞνια σε έναν εξαιρετικά ελκυστικÞ τουριστικÞ προορισµÞ, ανέφερε ο ΥπουργÞσ Ενέργειασ, Εµπορίου, Βιοµηχανίασ και Τουρισµού Γιώργοσ Λακκοτρύπησ στην ετήσια Γενική Συνέλευση τησ Εταιρείασ Τουριστικήσ Ανάπτυξησ και Προβολήσ Περιφέρειασ Λεµεσού. Σηµείωσε Þτι το 2013 περίπου 250 χιλιάδεσ περιηγητέσ επέλεξαν τη ΛεµεσÞ για τισ διακοπέσ τουσ «Ιδιαίτερα για τη ρωσική αγορά, στην οποία η Κυβέρνηση και ο ΚΟΤ επενδύουν πολλά, η ΛεµεσÞσ αποτελεί έναν πολύ αγαπητÞ προορισµÞ», ανέφερε ο ΥπουργÞσ. ΕνδεικτικÞ αυτού, είπε, είναι και το γεγονÞσ Þτι οι Ρώσοι κατατάσσονται πρώτοι στισ αφίξεισ τησ Επαρχίασ Λεµεσού, ενώ ακολουθούν Βρετανοί, Έλληνεσ και Γερµανοί τουρί-

στεσ. Ο ΥπουργÞσ σηµείωσε Þτι στον τοµέα τησ προβολήσ, το υλικÞ προώθησησ τησ Λεµεσού έχει εµπλουτιστεί µε τη δηµιουργία «Τουριστικού Οδηγού Λεµεσού» στα ρωσικά.

™Ùfi¯Ô˜ Ô ÔÈÔÙÈÎfi˜ ÙÔ˘ÚÈÛÌfi˜ ΑπÞ την πλευρά του ο ΠρÞεδροσ τησ Εταιρείασ Τουριστικήσ Ανάπτυξησ και Προβολήσ Λεµεσού, Τώνησ Αντωνίου ανέφερε πωσ η εταιρεία προσβλέπει σε ποιοτικά καλύτερο παρά µαζικÞ τουρισµÞ. Είναι ανησυχητικÞ το γεγονÞσ Þτι παρατηρείται µείωση του τουριστικού ρεύµατοσ απÞ παραδοσιακέσ αγορέσ Þπωσ η Γερµανία και η Αγγλία, παρά τη µικρή άνοδο στισ αγορέσ

∏ ÛԢˉÈ΋ ·ÁÔÚ¿ ÚÔÙÂÚ·ÈfiÙËÙ· ÁÈ· ÙËÓ ¶¿ÊÔ ∂ÓÈÛ¯‡ÂÙ·È Î·È ÙÔ Ú‡̷ ·fi πÛÚ·‹Ï Η Εταιρεία Τουριστικήσ Ανάπτυξησ και Προβολήσ Περιφέρειασ Πάφου (Ε.Τ.Α.Π), αριθµÞσ ξενοδÞχων και εκπρÞσωποσ του ∆ήµου Πάφου στα πλαίσια τησ συνέχειασ των προσπαθειών υλοποίησησ του σχεδίου προβολήσ και προώθηση τησ τουριστικήσ Πάφου στο εξωτερικÞ, συµµετέχουν στην έκθεση Ι.Μ.Τ.Μ στο Ισραήλ που πραγµατοποιείται σήµερα 12 Φεβρουαρίου στο Τέλ Αβίβ. Για τη συγκεκριµένη αγορά, Þπωσ αναφέρεται, γίνονται προσπάθειεσ ανάπτυξησ τησ τÞσο για την καλοκαιρινή Þσο και χειµερινή περίοδο. Επίσησ προσπάθειεσ γίνονται για ενίσχυση τησ αεροπορικήσ διασύνδεσησ και την προσέλκυση διαφÞρων ειδικών τµηµάτων τησ αγοράσ µε προοπτική, Þπωσ επισκέπτεσ µικρήσ διάρκειασ, γαµήλιεσ τελετέσ, τουρισµÞ ειδικών ενδιαφερÞντων κ.α. Η αγορά του Ισραήλ για το 2013 ήταν απÞ τισ αγορέσ που παρουσίασαν αύξηση περίπου κατά 10% σε σύγκριση µε το 2012 και η πρÞσφατη ενίσχυση των πτήσεων προσ Λάρνακα

για το 2014 ενισχύει τισ προοπτικέσ περαιτέρω ανάκαµψησ. Παράλληλα την ίδια εβδοµάδα η Ε.Τ.Α.Π Πάφου θα συµµετάσχει στην εξειδικευµένη έκθεση Panorama Greece – Cyprus στην ΣτοκχÞλµη-Σουηδίασ απÞ τισ 14-16 Φεβρουαρίου 2014. Η σουηδική αγορά για την Πάφο είναι πρώτησ προτεραιÞτητασ και παρουσιάζει κάποια θετική κινητικÞτητα κυρίωσ απÞ µεριάσ διοργανωτών ταξιδίων αλλά και περεταίρω αεροπορικήσ σύνδεσησ. Η τουριστική Πάφοσ θα συµµετάσχει στην εν λÞγω έκθεση µε δικÞ τησ περίπτερο σε συνεργασία µε ξενοδÞχουσ, γκολφ και Κ.Ο.Τ. Ήδη για την τρέχουσα περίοδο χειµώνα 2013-2014 , προστίθεται στην ανακοίνωση, έχουν διαφανεί πολύ θετικά αποτελέσµατα απÞ την εν λÞγω αγορά ιδιαίτερα Þσο αφορά την κάθοδο golfers αλλά και επισκέπτεσ µακράσ διάρκειασ. Η προοπτική απÞ την αγορά γενικÞτερα των βορείων χωρών είναι δεδοµένη και οι κοινέσ προσπάθειεσ θα συνεχιστούν αµείωτα, καταλήγει η ανακοίνωση.

τησ Ρωσίασ και τησ Ουκρανίασ και σηµείωσε πωσ “πρέπει Þλοι µαζί να δουλέψουµε για ανάκαµψη του τουριστικού µασ προϊÞντοσ”. ΑναφερÞµενοσ στα έργα στα οποία η ΛεµεσÞσ προσβλέπει, ο κ. Αντωνίου έκανε ιδιαίτερη αναφορά στην ανάγκη για δηµιουργία του Συνεδριακού Κέντρου, το οποίο για 11 χρÞνια παραµένει µÞνο στα χαρτιά, αφού Þπωσ σηµείωσε, έχουν γίνει τα σχέδια και έχει εξευρεθεί η τοποθεσία, αλλά δεν υπήρξε πολιτική βούληση απÞ την προηγούµενη Κυβέρνηση. Ο κ. Αντωνίου ζήτησε απÞ τον αρµÞδιο ΥπουργÞ και τον ΠρÞεδρο του ΚΟΤ Þπωσ προγραµµατιστεί σύντοµα συνάντηση µε Þλουσ τουσ αρµÞδιουσ τοπικούσ φορείσ για συζήτηση και προώθηση του θέµατοσ.

™ÙËÓ PrimeTel Ë 3Ë ¿‰ÂÈ· ÎÈÓËÙ‹˜ ÙËÏÂʈӛ·˜ H PrimeTel εξασφάλισε την τρίτη άδεια κινητήσ τηλεφωνίασ στην Κύπρο και εξελίσσεται, απÞ Πάροχο Ιδεατού ∆ικτύου Κινητήσ (MVNO – Mobile Virtual Network Operator) σε Πάροχο ∆ικτύου Κινητήσ (MNO - Mobile Network Operator). Η εξέλιξη αυτή, δίνει τη δυνατÞτητα δηµιουργίασ δικτύου 4ησ γενιάσ (4G), τη διάθεση νέων υπηρεσιών και την προσφορά ακÞµα χαµηλÞτερων τιµών. ΑπÞ το Μάιο του 2011 µέχρι και σήµερα, περισσÞτεροι απÞ 40.000 συνδροµητέσ εµπιστεύονται τισ υπηρεσίεσ PrimeTel Mobile απολαµβάνοντασ ολοκληρωµένεσ λύσεισ επικοινωνίασ. Με την κατοχύρωση τησ άδειασ, η εταιρεία θα προχωρήσει άµεσα στο σχεδιασµÞ και την ανάπτυξη δικτύου 4ησ γενιάσ, προσφέροντασ στουσ καταναλωτέσ, την πρωτÞγνωρη για τα Κυπριακά δεδοµένα εµπειρία 4G! Σήµερα η PrimeΤel διαθέτει το µεγαλύτερο ιδιωτικÞ ευρυζωνικÞ δίκτυο, προσφέροντασ υπηρεσίεσ σταθερήσ τηλεφωνίασ, διαδικτύου, ψηφιακήσ τηλεÞραση και WiFi. ΑκÞµη, διαχειρίζεται και λειτουργεί ∆ιεθνέσ ΣταθµÞ Προσγείωσησ Υποθαλάσσιου καλωδίου οπτικών ινών, το οποίο συνδέει την Κύπρο, µε τον υπÞλοιπο κÞσµο.



100 ̤Ú˜ ÚÈÓ ÙȘ ∂˘ÚˆÂÎÏÔÁ¤˜ ΜÞνο 100 µέρεσ έχουν αποµείνει µέχρι να ανοίξουν τα πρώτα εκλογικά κέντρα για τισ ευρωεκλογέσ του 2014. Στη δεύτερη µεγαλύτερη δηµοκρατική εκλογική διαδικασία στον κÞσµο, 400 εκατοµµύρια άνθρωποι µπορούν να ψηφίσουν για το νέο ΕυρωπαϊκÞ Κοινοβούλιο. Τα 751 Μέλη του Ευρωπαϊκού Κοινοβουλίου θα αναλάβουν τισ θέσεισ τουσ τον Ιούλιο και δεν θα διαµορφώσουν µÞνο την πορεία των ευρωπαϊκών νοµοθεσιών για τα επÞµενα πέντε χρÞνια, αλλά πολύ περισσÞτερο θα εκλέξουν τον ΠρÞεδρο τησ Ευρωπαϊκήσ Επιτροπήσ. Στην Κύπρο περισσÞτεροι απÞ 500.000 Κύπριοι πολίτεσ καλούνται να ψηφίσουν τουσ έξι Κύπριουσ εκπροσώπουσ τουσ στο ΕυρωπαϊκÞ Κοινοβούλιο για την περίοδο 2014-2019. Για πρώτη φορά, η σύνθεση του νέου Ευρωπαϊκού Κοινοβουλίου θα καθορίσει το ποιοσ θα ηγείται τησ επÞµενησ Ευρωπαϊκήσ Επιτροπήσ, του εκτελεστικού δηλαδή οργάνου τησ ΕΕ που προτείνει τη νοµοθεσία και εποπτεύει την υλοποίησή τησ. Σύµφωνα µε τουσ νέουσ κανÞνεσ, οι αρχηγοί των κυβερνήσεων τησ ΕΕ, θα πρέπει να προτείνουν έναν υποψήφιο για το αξίωµα του µελλοντικού Προέδρου τησ Ευρωπαϊκήσ Επιτροπήσ, µε βάση τα αποτελέσµατα των ευρωπαϊκών εκλογών. Το ΕυρωπαϊκÞ Κοινοβούλιο θα εκλέξει τον νέο ΠρÞεδρο τησ Επιτροπήσ µε πλειοψηφία των µελών που το απαρτίζουν, δηλαδή τουλάχιστον οι µισοί απÞ τα 751 µέλη του (376). Ωσ εκ τούτου, τα ευρωπαϊκά πολιτικά κÞµµατα θα υποβάλουν -κάποια το έχουν πράξει ήδη- τουσ υποψηφίουσ τουσ για αυτή την ηγετική θέση τησ ΕΕ πριν απÞ τισ ευρωπαϊκέσ εκλογέσ, επιτρέποντασ έτσι στουσ πολίτεσ να έχουν λÞγο για το ποιÞσ θα είναι ο επÞµενοσ ΠρÞεδροσ τησ Επιτροπήσ.

Η νέα πολιτική πλειοψηφία που θα αναδειχθεί απÞ τισ εκλογέσ θα διαµορφώσει, επίσησ, την ευρωπαϊκή νοµοθεσία για τα επÞµενα πέντε χρÞνια σε διάφορουσ τοµείσ Þπωσ η ενιαία αγορά ή οι πολιτικέσ ελευθερίεσ. Να σηµειωθεί Þτι το Κοινοβούλιο διαθέτει επτά πολιτικέσ οµάδεσ που αντιπροσωπεύουν πάνω απÞ 160 εθνικά κÞµµατα. Τέλοσ υπάρχουν κοινοί κανÞνεσ τησ ΕΕ για τισ εκλογέσ, αλλά εξακολουθούν να διοργανώνονται σε µεγάλο βαθµÞ σύµφωνα µε τισ εθνικέσ νοµοθεσίεσ και παραδÞσεισ. Για παράδειγµα, εναπÞκειται σε κάθε κράτοσ µέλοσ να αποφασίζει αν θα χρησιµοποιήσει σύστηµα εκλογήσ µε σταυρÞ προτίµησησ ή µε λίστα . Υπάρχουν διαφορέσ µεταξύ των κρατών µελών Þσον αφορά το κατώτατο Þριο ηλικίασ για την άσκηση των δικαιωµάτων του εκλέγειν και του εκλέγεσθαι. Η ελάχιστη ηλικία ψήφου είναι τα 18 σε Þλεσ τισ χώρεσ εκτÞσ απÞ την Αυστρία , Þπου είναι 16. Το ελάχιστο Þριο ηλικίασ για τουσ υποψηφίουσ ποικίλλει απÞ χώρα σε χώρα, αν και στισ περισσÞτερεσ περιπτώσεισ είναι επίσησ 18. Η ψηφοφορία είναι υποχρεωτική στο Βέλγιο, την Κύπρο, την Ελλάδα και το Λουξεµβούργο.

M¤¯ÚÈ Î·È €5 500,000 ·fi ÙÔ EUROSTARS ÁÈ· ÙȘ ªÌ∂ Τη δυνατÞτητα απορρÞφησησ µέχρι και 500.000 ευρώ ετησίωσ έχουν µικροµεσαίεσ επιχειρήσεισ, καθώσ και ερευνητικοί και ακαδηµαϊκοί φορείσ κατά την περίοδο 2014-2020, στο πλαίσιο του Προγράµµατοσ EUROSTARS. Σύµφωνα µε το Ίδρυµα Προώθησησ Έρευνασ, το ΠρÞγραµµα EUROSTARS, µια πρωτοβουλία του οργανισµού EUREKA, υποστηρίζει την πραγµατοποίηση δραστηριοτήτων έρευνασ και καινοτοµίασ σε Þλουσ τουσ τεχνολογικούσ τοµείσ, στοχεύοντασ ιδιαίτερα στισ ερευνητικά δραστήριεσ και τεχνολογικά καινοτÞµεσ µικροµεσαίεσ επιχειρήσεισ, µε απώτερο σκοπÞ την ενίσχυση τησ ανταγωνιστικÞτητασ, τησ απασχÞλησησ και τησ οικονοµικήσ ανάπτυξησ στην Ευρώπη. Η Κυβέρνηση έχει δεσµευτεί για συµµετοχή στο ΠρÞγραµµα EUROSTARS για την περίοδο 2014-2020 και τη χρηµατοδÞτηση κυπριακών φορέων µε συνολικά διαθέσιµο προϋπολογισµÞ τισ 500.000 ευρώ ετησίωσ. Καταληκτική ηµεροµηνία υποβολήσ προτάσεων στο ΠρÞγραµµα EUROSTARS είναι η 13η Μαρτίου 2014. Το Ίδρυµα Προώθησησ Έρευνασ είναι απÞ το 2002 το ΕθνικÞ Γραφείο του EUREKA στην Κύπρο και συµµετέχει ενεργά στα προγράµµατα και τισ δράσεισ του. Ο οργανισµÞσ EUREKA αποτελεί ένα πανευρωπαϊκÞ δίκτυο, στο οποίο µετέχουν σαράντα τρεισ χώρεσ και έχει στÞχο την προώθηση τησ βιοµηχανικήσ έρευνασ και ανάπτυξησ.

°¤Ê˘Ú· ÂÚˆÙÂ˘Ì¤ÓˆÓ ÂÁηÈÓÈ¿˙ÂÈ Ô ¢‹ÌÔ˜ ∞Á.¡¿·˜ Την Ηµέρα των Ερωτευµένων, η οποία εορτάζεται κάθε χρÞνο στισ 14 Φεβρουαρίου, επέλεξε ο ∆ήµοσ Αγίασ Νάπασ για να τελέσει τα εγκαίνια τησ “Γέφυρασ των ερωτευµένων”, τησ οποίασ οι εργασίεσ ανέγερσήσ τησ αποπερατώθηκαν πρÞσφατα. Η γέφυρα ανεγέρθηκε στην περιοχή «Μαυροκορώνα” ανατολικά τησ Αγίασ Νάπασ και η κατασκευή τησ κρίθηκε αναγκαία απÞ τον ∆ήµο µετά απÞ παρÞτρυνση αρκετών νεαρών ζευγαριών κυρίωσ νεÞνυµφων, οι οποίοι στη συγκεκριµένη περιοχή άφηναν τα σηµάδια του έρωτά τουσ π.χ. χαράζοντασ το Þνοµά τουσ ή τοποθετώντασ ένα λουλούδι ή µία κλειδαριά. Τα εγκαίνια θα τελέσει την Παρασκευή 14 Φεβρουαρίου 2014, στισ 4.00 το απÞγευµα ο ∆ήµαρχοσ Γιάννησ Καρούσοσ, ο οποίοσ µε τη σύζυγÞ του θα τοποθετήσουν στο κιγκλίδωµα τησ γέφυρασ κλειδαριά προτρέποντασ Þλα τα νεαρά ζευγάρια να ακολουθήσουν το παράδειγµά τουσ και να “κλειδώσουν” τον έρωτά τουσ στο συγκεκριµένο σηµείο. Στη συνέχεια το επίσηµο ζευγάρι µαζί µε Þλα τα υπÞλοιπα ζευγάρια θα ρίξουν τα κλειδιά στην θάλασσα, η οποία βρίσκεται λίγα µέτρα πιο κάτω απÞ τη γέφυρα.

ªÂ ‰fiÛÂȘ ÔÈ ÏËڈ̤˜ ÛÙÔ ™.∞ §¿Úӷη˜ Την πρακτική είσπραξησ απÞ τα ταµεία του ή µέσω διαδικτύου, µε δÞσεισ οποιουδήποτε ποσού των καταναλωτών, άρχισε να εφαρµÞζει το Συµβούλιο Αποχετεύσεων Λάρνακασ (ΣΑΛ) «στα πλαίσια των προσπαθειών του Συµβουλίου για διευκÞλυνση του κοινού στην πληρωµή των ετήσιων λογαριασµών». H πρακτική είσπραξησ θα γίνεται απÞ τα ταµεία του ΣΑΛ ή µέσω διαδικτύου, µε δÞσεισ, οποιουδήποτε ποσού, υπÞ την προϋπÞθεση Þτι τα τέλη θα εξοφλούνται πριν την καθορισµένη τελευταία ηµεροµηνία πληρωµήσ, αναφέρει το ΣΑΛ.



6 | ∆ΙΕΘΝΗ |

∞ÁÁÂÏÈÔÊfiÚÔ˜ ÙÔ˘ ™fiÈÌÏÂ Ô Î. ¡ÙÚ¿ÁÎÈ ¡›ÎÔ˜ ªÈ¯·ËÏ›‰Ë˜ Foreign Exchange Analyst Email: Η ΕΚΤ στην τελευταία τησ συνεδρίαση διέψευσε τισ προσδοκίεσ των αναλυτών για σηµαντικέσ αποφάσεισ, καθώσ δεν υπήρξε καµία έκπληξη απÞ την ΕΚΤ και κανένα επιπλέον µέτρο ποσοτικήσ χαλάρωσησ. Η απÞφαση τησ ΕΚΤ να µη λάβει σηµαντικέσ αποφάσεισ, παρά το χαµηλÞτερο πληθωρισµÞ για την Ευρωζώνη απÞ την κρίση του 2008 (+0,7% τον Ιανουάριο Υ/Υ), εξέπληξε πολλούσ καθώσ η φηµολογία για µια περαιτέρω περικοπή του επιτοκίου στο 0,10% απÞ 0,25% έδειχνε πιθανή. Πέρα απÞ αυτÞ, την τελευταία περίοδο πολλοί οικονοµικοί αναλυτέσ προέβλεπαν Þτι νέα µέτρα θα µπορούσαν να ληφθούν σε αυτή τη συνεδρίαση ενισχύοντασ τισ πολιτικέσ ποσοτικήσ χαλάρωσησ που ακολουθεί η ΕΚΤ. Στη συνέχεια ακούσαµε τον πρÞεδρο τησ ΕΚT, Μάριο Ντράγκι ο οποίοσ σαν καλÞσ αγγελιοφÞροσ του κ. ΣÞιµπλε τÞνισε πωσ ο αποπληθωρισµÞσ δεν είναι πρÞβληµα για την Ευρωζώνη ή καλύτερα υποβάθµισε το Þλο πρÞβληµα σε µια συνέχεια θα λέγαµε των Þσων εδώ και µήνεσ διατυµπανίζει ο υπερυπουργÞσ τησ Γερµανίασ σχεδÞν σε κάθε δηµÞσια του συνέντευξη. Επίσησ σε συνέχεια των πιο πάνω τÞνισε πωσ σε καµία περίπτωση η κατάσταση του πληθωρισµού στην Ευρωζώνη δεν συγκρίνεται µε την αντίστοιχη τησ Ιαπωνίασ στα τέλη τησ δεκαετίασ του 90. Μπορεί ναι µεν η κατάσταση να µην είναι η ίδια µε την Ιαπωνία η οποία είδη συµπλήρωσε δύο δεκαετίεσ αποπληθωρισµού, αλλά µε την πολιτική τουσ ΕΚΤ και Γερµανοί δεν θα αργήσουν να ρίξουν την Ευρωζώνη σε παρÞµοια αν Þχι και χειρÞτερη κατάσταση. Αν ρίξει κάποιοσ µια µατιά στα στοιχεία του Ευρωπαϊκού νÞτου ο πληθωρισµÞσ το τελευταίο τρίµηνο έχει κτυπήσει νέο αρνητικÞ ρεκÞρ. Οι χώρεσ-µέλη τησ Ε.Ε. και η ΕΚΤ πρέπει να αντιµετωπί-

σουν το ταχύτερο δυνατÞ τον κίνδυνο που συνεπάγεται ο αποπληθωρισµÞσ για την βιωσιµÞτητα του χρέουσ χωρών σε πρÞγραµµα, σε συνδυασµÞ βέβαια µε τισ Þποιεσ άλλεσ αναγκαίεσ αποφάσεισ που αναµένονται να ληφθούν. Σε αντίθετη περίπτωση, οι πολίτεσ των χωρών σε πρÞγραµµα θα καταλήξουν στο συµπέρασµα Þτι Þλεσ τουσ οι προσπάθειεσ για να πετύχουν πρωτογενή πλεονάσµατα ώστε να ελεγχθεί η δυναµική του χρέουσ είναι χωρίσ προοπτική. Ο αποπληθωρισµÞσ είναι το καινούργιο πρÞσωπο τησ Ευρωπαϊκήσ κρίσησ. Ùλοι περιµένουν οι τιµέσ να πέσουν παρακάτω, η αξία του χρέουσ ανεβαίνει. Ανεβαίνει βέβαια και η αγοραστική αξία του χρήµατοσ αλλά µε µείωση του διαθέσιµου εισοδήµατοσ, το Þφελοσ εξαφανίζεται. Έτσι η οικονοµία αποδιαρθρώνεται χωρίσ να διαθέτει δυναµική ανασύνταξησ, αφού λείπει η ζήτηση και δε γίνονται επενδύσεισ. Η ανεργία αυξάνεται και ο πληθωρισµÞσ πέφτει! Τα µεγέθη στον ΕυρωπαϊκÞ νÞτο είναι τροµακτικά. Η βασική αιτία αυτού είναι βεβαίωσ η σκληρή και εγκληµατική µονÞπλευρη λιτÞτητα που εφάρµοσαν οι Γερµανοί η οποία έχει πλήξει θανάσιµα την κατανάλωση και την αναζωογÞνηση τησ πραγµατικήσ οικονοµίασ. Εν τέλει βεβαίωσ επηρεάζει και την κρίση χρέουσ. Η βιωσιµÞτητα του χρέουσ επηρεάζεται απÞ παράγοντεσ Þπωσ η ύπαρξη ή µη ελλειµµάτων, το ύψοσ των επιτοκίων, η πορεία του ΑΕΠ. Οσο πιο γρήγορα αυξάνεται το ονοµαστικÞ ΑΕΠ τÞσο πιο εύκολα µπορεί να εξυπηρετηθεί το χρέοσ και µειώνεται και ο λÞγοσ χρέουσ προσ ΑΕΠ που αξιολογούν οι αγορέσ. Αρα ένασ υψηλÞσ πληθωρισµÞσ ή µια γρήγορη αύξηση του ΑΕΠ βοηθά στη µείωση του βάρουσ του χρέουσ. Ναι µεν ο αποπληθωρισµÞσ βελτιώνει την ανταγωνιστικÞτητα αλλά υπονοµεύει τη δυναµική του χρέουσ αφού οδηγεί σε µείωση του ονοµαστικού ΑΕΠ και εποµένωσ σε αύξηση του λÞγου χρέουσ προσ ΑΕΠ. Ο αποπληθωρισµÞσ, ωσ σύµπτωµα πλέον πολύ σοβαρÞτερων παραγωγικών αδυναµιών, είναι σε θέση να αποδυναµώσει τα Þποια στοιχεία ανάκαµψησ στην Ευρωπαϊκή. Γι αυτÞ επιβάλλεται η ECB να κινηθεί δυναµικά αγνοώντασ

επιτέλουσ τουσ εσωστρεφήσ Γερµανούσ και να εφαρµÞσει την ποσοτική χαλάρωση. Κάτι παρÞµοιο βίωσε και η Ιαπωνία τα τέλη τησ 10ετίασ του 90 και η επιλογή τησ να καθυστερήσει να αντιδράσει έριξε την χώρα σε µια ατελείωτη 20χρονη ταλαιπωρία αποπληθωρισµού. Πλέον Þµωσ έστω και πολύ αργά αποφάσισαν να αντιδράσουν εφαρµÞζοντασ τα λεγÞµενα Abenomics, µε στÞχο να µπει τέλοσ στον αποπληθωρισµÞ και τη στασιµÞτητα τησ οικονοµίασ. Για να το πετύχει, η ιαπωνική κυβέρνηση εφαρµÞζει ένα πρÞγραµµα ενίσχυσησ τησ οικονοµίασ µε δισεκατοµµύρια γιεν απÞ τα κρατικά ταµεία. Σε συνδυασµÞ µε την υποτίµηση του ιαπωνικού νοµίσµατοσ, η πολιτική αυτή φαίνεται να αποδίδει, έχει, Þµωσ εκτοξεύσει το χρέοσ τησ χώρασ σε ιστορικά υψηλά. Ο χρÞνοσ βέβαια θα κρίνει τον συντηρητικÞ πλην απροσδÞκητα «επιθετικÞ» Ιάπωνα πρωθυπουργÞ. Πάντωσ το αποτέλεσµα του σχεδίου του θα έχει ιδιαίτερο ενδιαφέρον για την ευρωζώνη, αφού ενδεχÞµενη επιτυχία θα δώσει πολλή τροφή για σκέψη, σχετικά µε τη σφιχτή νοµισµατική πολιτική που υπερασπίζεται µε νύχια και µε δÞντια το Βερολίνο.

√È ∂Ï‚ÂÙÔ› ÎÏ›ÓÔ˘Ó Ù· Û‡ÓÔÚ· ÛÙÔ˘˜ ÌÂÙ·Ó¿ÛÙ˜ ΠολιτικÞ και, κυρίωσ, οικονοµικÞ σοκ προκάλεσε στην Ελβετία το αποτέλεσµα του κυριακάτικου δηµοψηφίσµατοσ, µε βάση το οποίο -και για µÞλισ 19.526 ψήφουσ- η κυβέρνηση τησ Βέρνησ υποχρεούται, µέσα στην επÞµενη τριετία, να θεσπίσει περιορισµούσ και ποσοστώσεισ για την είσοδο µεταναστών απÞ τισ χώρεσ-µέλη τησ Ε.Ε, Þπωσ αναφέρεται σε άρθρο τησ Ηµερισίασ. Παρά δε το γεγονÞσ Þτι τα ακριβή Þρια θα γίνουν αντικείµενο διαπραγµατεύσεων, ήδη οι επιχειρηµατικέσ ενώσεισ εκφράζουν την έντονη ανησυχία τουσ για τισ συνέπειεσ -ενώ ΚοµισιÞν, Γερµανοί και Γάλλοι, προειδοποιούν τουσ Ελβετούσ Þτι θα έχουν συνέπειεσ µετά απÞ αυτή τουσ την απÞφαση. Βεβαίωσ, η αλήθεια είναι Þτι η ελβετική κυβέρνηση είχε καλέσει µετ’ επιτάσεωσ τουσ πολίτεσ να µην ψηφίσουν «ναι», τελικά Þµωσ επικράτησε η άποψη του ακροδεξιού Λαϊκού ΚÞµµατοσ (SVP) το οποίο, εδώ και χρÞνια, είναι η µεγαλύτερη πολιτική δύναµη και στισ εκλογέσ του 2011 διασφάλισε το 26,6% των ψήφων και 54 απÞ τισ 200 έδρεσ τησ Βουλήσ. Η ισχύσ του αποδείχθηκε, άλλωστε, και το 2009, Þταν η πλειοψηφία είχε ταχθεί κατά τησ κατασκευήσ µιναρέδων στην Ελβετία, αλλά και το 2010, Þταν είχε εγκριθεί η

πρÞταση να απελαύνονται αυτοµάτωσ Þσοι αλλοδαποί καταδικάζονται για σοβαρά εγκλήµατα. Ùπωσ ήταν αναµενÞµενο, Þµορα κÞµµατα απÞ Þλη την Ευρώπη, Þπωσ το γαλλικÞ ΕθνικÞ Μέτωπο, το βρετανικÞ ΚÞµµα Ανεξαρτησίασ, ακÞµη και η Εναλλακτική για τη

Γερµανία, έσπευσαν να χαιρετίσουν το αποτέλεσµα του προχθεσινού δηµοψηφίσµατοσ. Ο επιχειρηµατικÞσ κÞσµοσ, Þµωσ, ανησυχεί. «Οι τράπεζεσ έχουν ανάγκη ειδικευµένουσ υπαλλήλουσ. Περίπου το 25% του προσωπικού τουσ προέρχεται απÞ χώρεσ τησ Ε.Ε. Η SBA φοβάται Þτι οι επιλογέσ θα περιοριστούν και θα καταστεί δυσκολÞτερο για τισ τράπεζεσ να καλύπτουν τισ ανάγκεσ τουσ», ανέφερε σε ανακοίνωσή τησ η Οµοσπονδία Ελβετικών Τραπεζών. Ανάλογεσ θέσεισ διατύπωσε και ο επικεφαλήσ τησ Οµοσπονδίασ Ελβετών Εργοδοτών, Βάλεντιν Βογκτ, τονίζοντασ Þτι οι µεγάλοι Þµιλοι θα το σκέφτονται πλέον διπλά προτού πραγµατοποιήσουν επενδύσεισ στην Ελβετία. «Το αποτέλεσµα είναι εξαιρετικά εξοργιστικÞ», ήταν το σχÞλιο που έκανε και ο επικεφαλήσ τησ Ένωσησ Ελβετικών Επιχειρήσεων στη Γερµανία, Χέλγκε Ριλ. ΤαυτÞχρονα, Þπωσ προαναφέραµε, οι υπουργοί Οικονοµικών Γερµανίασ και Γαλλίασ, ΒÞλφγκανγκ ΣÞιµπλε και Λοράν Φαµπιούσ, άφησαν ανοιχτÞ το ενδεχÞµενο να επαναξεταστεί το σύνολο των σχέσεων µε την Ελβετία, η οποία απολαµβάνει ειδικών προνοµίων στισ εµπορικέσ συναλλαγέσ µε την Ε.Ε., που είναι και µακράν ο σηµαντικÞτεροσ εταίροσ τησ.

ÕÓÔ‰Ô˜ ÙÔ˘ ¢ÚÒ ¤Ó·ÓÙÈ ÙÔ˘ ‰ÔÏ·Ú›Ô˘ ∞Ó‰Ú¤·˜ ∆ÛÔÏ¿Î˘ Treasury Division, Alpha Bank Cyprus Ltd Ενισχυµένο παρουσιάζεται το ευρωπαϊκÞ νÞµισµα έναντι του αµερικανικού δολαρίου την τρέχουσα εβδοµάδα καθώσ τύγχανε διαπραγµάτευσησ µέχρι τα 1,3683 το πρωί τησ Τρίτησ που αποτελεί υψηλÞ 2 εβδοµάδων. Νωρίσ χθεσ το απÞγευµα, το ευρώ τύγχανε διαπραγµάτευσησ περί τα 1,3670. Αρνητικά επηρεάστηκε το δολάριο Αµερικήσ απÞ την εκτίµηση Þτι η Κεντρική Οµοσπονδιακή Τράπεζα των ΗΠΑ ενδεχοµένωσ να ολοκληρώσει το πρÞγραµµα αγοράσ τίτλων αργÞτερα απÞ Þτι αναµένεται. Συγκεκριµένα, οι αναλυτέσ εκτιµούν Þτι η πρÞθεση τησ Οµοσπονδιακήσ Τραπέζησ των ΗΠΑ είναι να εξακολουθεί να εφαρµÞζει υποστηρικτική για την ανάπτυξη νοµισµατική πολιτική, ενώ ενδεχοµένωσ σηµειώνεται Þτι το ύψοσ του προγράµµατοσ ποσοτικήσ επέ-

κτασησ πιθανÞν να µειωθεί περαιτέρω, εφÞσον η εξέλιξη τησ οικονοµίασ είναι αντίστοιχη των προβλέψεων τησ Fed. Σε µια άλλη εξέλιξη, η Ευρωπαϊκή Κεντρική Τράπεζα (ΕΚΤ), κατά την συνεδρία τησ περασµένησ Πέµπτησ, αποφάσισε Þπωσ αναµενÞταν να διατηρήσει αµετάβλητο το επιτÞκιο αναφοράσ στο ιστορικά χαµηλÞ επίπεδο του 0,25%. Η ΕΚΤ επανέλαβε Þτι το επιτÞκιο αναφοράσ θα διατηρηθεί στο τρέχον ιδιαιτέρωσ χαµηλÞ επίπεδο ή χαµηλÞτερα για παρατεταµένη χρονική περίοδο. Επισήµανε Þτι τα οικονοµικά δεδοµένα συµβαδίζουν µε την ανάγκη εφαρµογήσ επεκτατικήσ νοµισµατικήσ πολιτικήσ. Στην συνέντευξη που ακολούθησε, ο ΠρÞεδροσ τησ ΕΚΤ επανέλαβε Þτι η Ευρωπαϊκή Κεντρική Τράπεζα είναι διατεθειµένη να χρησιµοποιήσει Þλα τα διαθέσιµα µέσα πολιτικήσ, εφÞσον κριθεί ανα-

γκαίο. Η ΕΚΤ αναµένει ήπια οικονοµική ανάπτυξη στην Ευρωζώνη, καθώσ η εγχώρια ζήτηση ενδεχοµένωσ θα ενισχυθεί µε τη συµβολή τησ επεκτατικήσ νοµισµατικήσ πολιτικήσ. Αναµένεται επίσησ να καταγραφεί αύξηση των εξαγωγών. ΩστÞσο, επισηµάνθηκε Þτι ο κίνδυνοσ για την οικονοµική ανάπτυξη είναι καθοδικÞσ, καθώσ το ποσοστÞ ανεργίασ στην Ευρωζώνη διατηρείται σε υψηλÞ επίπεδο. Η αναταραχή στισ αναδυÞµενεσ αγορέσ ενδεχοµένωσ να επηρεάσει αρνητικά την οικονοµική προοπτική στην Ευρωζώνη. Επιπλέον, σύµφωνα µε την ΕΚΤ η δηµοσιονοµική προσαρµογή θα πρέπει να εντάσσεται σε πλαίσιο υποστηρικτικήσ προσ την ανάπτυξη οικονοµικήσ πολιτικήσ. Το ενδιαφέρον τησ αγοράσ εστιάζεται στη συνεδρία του Eurogroup καθώσ αναµένεται οι Υπουργοί Οικονοµικών τησ Ευρωζώνησ να συζητήσουν το ενδεχÞµενο να υπάρχει η δυνατÞτητα άµεσησ ανακεφαλαιοποίησησ τραπεζών απÞ τον ESM.


12 ΦΕΒΡΟΥΑΡΙΟΥ, 2014 | ΕΛΛΑ∆Α | 7

«ŒÛ·Û·Ó» ÔÈ ·ÓÙÈÎÂÈÌÂÓÈΤ˜ ·Í›Â˜ ÙˆÓ ÂÏÏËÓÈÎÒÓ ·ÎÈÓ‹ÙˆÓ Ούτε τα ακριβά προάστια τησ Αθήνασ δεν ξέφυγαν απÞ τη βαθιά κρίση που πλήττει τα τελευταία χρÞνια την ελληνική αγορά ακινήτων. Μάλιστα, οι περιοχέσ µε τα «λαµπερά» ακίνητα που άλλοτε κÞστιζαν µια περιουσία, έχουν υποστεί καθίζηση σε Þτι αφορά τισ τιµέσ και πλέον ένα µεγάλο µέροσ των αγοραπωλησιών έχουν «σπάσει» τισ αντικειµενικέσ αξίεσ. Σύµφωνα µε έρευνα που πραγµατοποίησε το δίκτυο µεσιτικών γραφείων RE/MAX και δηµοσίευσε η Ηµερισία, και συγκεκριµένα η RE/MAX Αθµονον, στα βÞρεια προάστια, (Μαρούσι, Βριλήσσια, Μελίσσια, Κηφισιά, Ν. Ερυθραία, Εκάλη και ∆ροσιά) δείχνει Þτι πλέον υπάρχουν µεγάλεσ επενδυτικέσ ευκαιρίεσ καθώσ έχουν βγει πωλητήρια σε πολύ χαµηλέσ τιµέσ. Είναι χαρακτηριστικÞ Þτι στο Μαρούσι, το 2013 το 53% των πωληθέντων ακινήτων δÞθηκε κάτω απÞ την αντικειµενικήσ τουσ αξία. Στην Εκάλη 4 στα 10 ακίνητα πωλήθηκαν κάτω απÞ την αντικειµενική, στη ∆ροσιά το 56%, στα Βριλήσσια το 33%, στην Κηφισιά το 40%. Γενικά οι πωλήσεισ κάτω απÞ την αντικειµενική αξία αφορούν στο 28% έωσ 61% των πωλήσεων. Και είναι εντυπωσιακÞ το γεγονÞσ Þτι ακÞµη και ακίνητα που κατασκευάστηκαν µετά το 2000 άρχισαν να πωλούνται κάτω απÞ την αντικειµενική αξία. Τα στοιχεία δείχνουν επίσησ Þτι τα περισσÞτερα σπίτια (50%) των οποίων η τιµή πώλησησ είναι χαµηλÞτερη απÞ 0 έωσ 10% σε σχέση µε την αντικειµενική πουλήθηκαν στα Μελίσσια και ακολουθούν Ν. Ερυθραία και ∆ροσιά (44%),

Βριλήσσια (38%), Εκάλη (33%). Ιδιαίτερο ενδιαφέρον έχει το γεγονÞσ Þτι δεν υπάρχουν πλέον ακριβέσ και φθηνέσ περιοχέσ στην Αθήνα, σε Þτι αφορά τισ προτιµήσεισ των επενδυτών. Ολοι ζητούν φθηνά ακίνητα, σε τιµή «ευκαιρία», ακÞµη κι αν είναι µικρά ή παλαιά. Η κρίση, παράλληλα, καταρρίπτει το µύθο των ακριβών σπιτιών στα βÞρεια προάστια καθώσ η συντριπτική πλειοψηφία των αγοραστών στρέφεται σε διαµερίσµατα (απÞ 51% έωσ 89% ανάλογα µε την περιοχή). Εξαίρεση αποτελεί η Εκάλη Þπου µÞνο 20% των πωληθέντων σπιτιών ήταν διαµέρισµα (δεν υπάρχουν άλλωστε πολλέσ πολυκατοικίεσ), το 50% είναι µεζονέτεσ και το 20% είναι οικÞπεδα. Αναφορικά µε τισ επιλογέσ των αγοραστών και στα βÞρεια προάστια ισχύει ο κανÞνασ των φθηνών επιλογών. Παρ’ Þτι οι υπάρχουσεσ ζητήσεισ αφορούν σε ακίνητα έωσ 15 ετών, στο Μαρούσι το 51% των πωλήσεων αφορά σε ακίνητα άνω των 20 ετών, στην Εκάλη το 69% και στην Κηφισιά το 59%. ΑυτÞ σηµαίνει Þτι τα νεÞδµητα βρίσκονται στα αζήτητα και µÞνο στην Ερυθραία το 35% που πωλήθηκε ήταν καινούργιο. Οι επενδυτέσ, επίσησ, ζητούν µικρά και µεσαία σπίτια προκειµένου να ικανοποιήσουν τισ στεγαστικέσ τουσ ανάγκεσ χωρίσ να ξοδέψουν πολλά χρήµατα. Στο Μαρούσι, το 59% των πωληθέντων κατοικιών είναι απÞ 70% έωσ 120 τ.µ., στα Βριλήσσια το 54%, στα Μελίσσια το 83% ενώ στην Κηφισιά τα µισά σπίτια που δÞθηκαν ήταν άνω των 150 τ.µ. Στισ περιοχέσ δηλαδή που υποχώρησαν οι τιµέσ περισσÞτε-

ŒÓ· ÛÙ· ‰‡Ô ·Î›ÓËÙ· ˆÏÔ‡ÓÙ·È Î¿Ùˆ ·fi ÙËÓ ·ÓÙÈÎÂÈÌÂÓÈ΋ ·Í›·, ·ÎfiÌË Î·È ·Î›ÓËÙ· Ô˘ ηٷÛ΢¿ÛÙËÎ·Ó ÌÂÙ¿ ÙÔ 2000 ρο οι αγοραστέσ ζητούν µεγαλύτερα ακίνητα αντί να αγοράσουν σε ακριβÞτερεσ περιοχέσ αλλά πιο µικρέσ κατοικίεσ. Συµπερασµατικά, οι επενδυτέσ στα βÞρεια προάστια µειώνουν τετραγωνικά και αυξάνουν παλαιÞτητα, αναζητούν ευκαιρίεσ και ψάχνουν περισσÞτερο για σπίτια παρά για άλλου είδουσ ακίνητο.

∞‡ÍËÛË 12% ÛÙËÓ ÂÈ‚·ÙÈ΋ ΛÓËÛË Ù˘ AEGEAN-Olympic Αύξηση κατά 12% παρουσίασε η συνολική επιβατική κίνηση τησ AEGEAN και τησ Olympic Air τον Ιανουάριο του 2014, φθάνοντασ τουσ 522.000 επιβάτεσ, 57.000 περισσÞτερουσ σε σχέση µε το άθροισµα των επιβατών των δύο εταιρειών κατά τον αντίστοιχο µήνα του 2013. Στην αγορά του εξωτερικού, η εταιρεία παρουσίασε αύξηση στη δραστηριοποίησή τησ απÞ την Αθήνα κατά 9% φθάνοντασ τουσ 178.000 επιβάτεσ, καθώσ και κίνηση 50.000 επιβατών απÞ τη Θεσσαλονίκη, παρά την εποχικÞτητα τησ βάσησ, απÞ το σύνολο των 228.000 επιβατών εξωτερικού.

Η αύξηση τησ κίνησησ τησ Αθήνασ είναι αποτέλεσµα κυρίωσ των νέων προορισµών, που εγκαινίασε η εταιρεία το 2013 και συνέχισε και τη χειµερινή περίοδο, και αφορά τισ πÞλεισ Γενεύη, Κίεβο, Βαρσοβία, Πράγα, καθώσ και τησ ανάκαµψησ τησ κίνησησ σε παραδοσιακούσ προορισµούσ, Þπωσ η Μαδρίτη, οι Βρυξέλλεσ και η ΜÞσχα. Υπενθυµίζεται Þτι οι υπÞλοιπεσ βάσεισ αεροσκαφών για πτήσεισ εξωτερικού τησ εταιρείασ (Ηράκλειο, ΡÞδοσ, Καλαµάτα, Κωσ, Κέρκυρα, Χανιά) ξεκινούν δραστηριÞτητα σταδιακά απÞ τον Μάρτιο/Απρίλιο, ενώ γίνεται προσπάθεια

για το 2014 να λειτουργήσουν για µεγαλύτερη περίοδο µε σκοπÞ την επέκταση τησ τουριστικήσ περιÞδου. Παράλληλα, και για πρώτη φορά την τελευταία τετραετία, η αθροιστική κίνηση εσωτερικού τησ AEGEAN και τησ Olympic Air παρουσίασε αύξηση 18% απÞ την βάση τησ Αθήνασ µε 271.000 επιβάτεσ και κατά 41% µε 23.000 επιβάτεσ απÞ τη βάση τησ Θεσσαλονίκησ προσ τα νησιά. Συνολικά, για το µήνα Ιανουάριο η επιβατική κίνηση εσωτερικού για τισ δυο εταιρείεσ ανήλθε στουσ 294.000 επιβάτεσ απÞ 246.000.

∂¤ÎÙ·ÛË ÙÔ˘ ∫ÔÚÚ¤ ÛÙËÓ §·ÙÈÓÈ΋ ∞ÌÂÚÈ΋ ̤ۈ ∞von Tην έναρξη στρατηγικήσ συνεργασίασ για την παραγωγή και διανοµή των προϊÞντων ΚΟΡΡΕΣ στη Λατινική Αµερική, ανακοίνωσαν η ΚΟΡΡΕΣ και η AVON Products, Inc. (NYSE: AVP). Η συγκεκριµένη συνεργασία έχει αφετηρία τον Φεβρουάριο 2014 και προβλέπεται να διαρκέσει µέχρι και 14 χρÞνια. Παράλληλα παρέχει το δικαίωµα στην AVON να αγοράσει µελλοντικά Þλα τα δικαιώµατα πνευµατικήσ και βιοµηχανικήσ ιδιοκτησίασ των προϊÞντων ΚΟΡΡΕΣ για τη Λατινική Αµερική. Η συµφωνία διασφαλίζει στην ΚΟΡΡΕΣ έσοδα ύψουσ 8,5 εκ. ευρώ για τουσ πρώτουσ 12 µήνεσ τησ συνεργασίασ, τα οποία αντιστοιχούν στη διάθεση των εµπορικών σηµάτων ΚΟΡΡΕΣ στισ χώρεσ τησ Λατινικήσ Αµερικήσ, καθώσ και σε αµοιβέσ για την υποστήριξη τησ τοποθέτησησ των προϊÞντων ΚΟΡΡΕΣ στισ χώρεσ αυτέσ. Στη συνέχεια, θα καταβάλλονται δικαιώµατα για τη χρήση πνευµατικήσ και βιοµηχανικήσ ιδιοκτησίασ τησ ΚΟΡΡΕΣ βάσει τησ πορείασ των πωλήσεων, καθώσ και αµοιβέσ για συνεχιζÞµενη παροχή υπηρεσιών υποστήριξησ. Η AVON είναι πολυεθνική εταιρεία µε ηγετική θέση στο

χώρο τησ οµορφιάσ και ετήσια έσοδα που αγγίζουν τα $11 δισ., ενώ τα προϊÞντα τησ διατίθενται σε περισσÞτερεσ απÞ 100 χώρεσ. Η Λατινική Αµερική αποτελεί τον µεγαλύτερο επιχειρηµατικÞ χώρο τησ AVON, απÞ τον οποίο προέρχεται το 50% σχεδÞν των εσÞδων τησ. «Η Λατινική Αµερική παρουσιάζει εξαιρετική δυναµική για τη βιοµηχανία οµορφιάσ και αποτελεί µία εκ των σηµαντικÞτερων αγορών στο χαρτοφυλάκιο τησ AVON. Είµαι ιδιαίτερα χαρούµενη, που έχουµε τη δυνατÞτητα, µέσα απÞ αυτή τη στρατηγική συνεργασία, να αξιοποιήσουµε το εκτε-

ταµένο δίκτυο πωλήσεων και τισ ικανÞτητέσ µασ για να φέρουµε τισ γυναίκεσ τησ Λατινικήσ Αµερικήσ κοντά στη φιλοσοφία και τα προϊÞντα ΚΟΡΡΕΣ», σηµείωσε η Sheri McCoy, Chief Executive Officer, τησ Avon Products, Inc. «Η Λατινική Αµερική υπήρξε ανέκαθεν αγορά υψηλού ενδιαφέροντοσ για την ΚΟΡΡΕΣ. Έχουµε τώρα µία µοναδική ευκαιρία να προσεγγίσουµε ένα ευρύ καταναλωτικÞ κοινÞ που υιοθετεί τισ αξίεσ και τη φιλοσοφία µασ. Η AVON είναι ένασ στρατηγικÞσ συνεργάτησ που µπορεί να µασ βοηθήσει να ξεκινήσουµε άλλο ένα υπέροχο ταξίδι. Παράλληλα, η συνεργασία αυτή µασ ενδυναµώνει και µασ παρέχει επιπλέον δυνατÞτητεσ για την επαύξηση των αναπτυξιακών προοπτικών µασ», τÞνισε ο Γιώργοσ Κορρέσ, ιδρυτήσ τησ ΚΟΡΡΕΣ. Παράλληλα η ΚΟΡΡΕΣ έχει προχωρήσει στην ίδρυση θυγατρικήσ τησ εταιρείασ για Β. Αµερική & Καναδά. Η έναρξη λειτουργίασ τησ εταιρείασ, πραγµατοποιήθηκε τον Ιανουάριο του 2014, µε σκοπÞ τη διανοµή των προϊÞντων ΚΟΡΡΕΣ απευθείασ στην Αµερικανική αγορά. Με τη νέα αυτή δοµή, ο Ùµιλοσ ΚΟΡΡΕΣ θα συνεχίσει την επιτυχηµένη πορεία του στην εν λÞγω αγορά, υποστηρίζοντάσ την µε τα υφιστάµενα και νέα καινοτÞµα προϊÞντα του.

∫·ı’ Ô‰fiÓ ÚÔ˜ ÙÔ Grecovery Ë ∂ÏÏ¿‰· ΑισιÞδοξοσ Þτι η επαναφορά τησ Ελλάδασ στην ανάπτυξη, το αποκαλούµενο Grecovery, είναι καθ’ οδÞν, δήλωσε ο διοικητήσ τησ Τράπεζασ τησ Ελλάδασ Γιώργοσ ΠροβÞπουλοσ. Ο κ. ΠροβÞπουλοσ είπε Þτι γενικά αναµένεται καταγραφή, έστω δειλού θετικού ρυθµού ανάπτυξησ για την ελληνική οικονοµία το 2014. Σηµείωσε, πάντωσ, Þτι η οικονοµία παραµένει εύθραυστη και ευαίσθητη σε αρνητικέσ εξελίξεισ στην ευρωζώνη. ΤÞνισε Þτι η Ελλάδα έχει υποστεί µία απÞ τισ µεγαλύτερεσ δηµοσιονοµικέσ προσαρµογέσ µεταξύ των χωρών που έχει ενταχθεί σε πρÞγραµµα του ∆ΝΤ. Είπε Þτι µε Þρουσ µικτών δεικτών τα µέτρα τησ περιÞδου 2010-2013 αναλογούσαν στο 30% τησ εγχώριασ παραγωγήσ, ενώ µε τα πρÞσθετα µέτρα που εφαρµÞζονται φέτοσ εκτίµησε Þτι το πρωτογενέσ πλεÞνασµα θα αυξηθεί στο 1,5% του ΑΕΠ για το 2014. Σηµείωσε Þτι η χαµένη ανταγωνιστικÞτητα έχει αποκατασταθεί πλήρωσ απÞ το τέλοσ του περασµένου έτουσ, οδηγώντασ σε ενίσχυση των εξαγωγών και του τοµέα των υπηρε-

σιών. Παρουσίασε δε µια σειρά δεικτών που αποδεικνύουν τη βελτίωση τησ κατάσταση των δηµοσίων οικονοµικών και τησ προοπτικήσ τουσ. ΑναφερÞµενοσ στο εγχώριο τραπεζικÞ σύστηµα σχολίασε Þτι η αναδιάρθρωση που υπέστη ήταν «τεράστια». Είπε Þτι αρχικά η Κεντρική Τράπεζα προσπάθησε να διασφαλίσει τη ρευστÞτητα και την κεφαλαιακή επάρκεια του τραπεζικού συστήµατοσ, ενώ τώρα είναι σε εξέλιξη η δεύτερη φάση τησ στρατηγικήσ. Ùπωσ εξήγησε, εφαρµÞζεται ένα νέο επιχειρηµατικÞ µοντέλο λειτουργίασ των τραπεζών, καθώσ αξιοποιούν τώρα συνέργειεσ και οικονοµίεσ κλίµακασ, αυξάνοντασ την αποτελεσµατικÞτητά τουσ. ΠρÞσθεσε Þτι στρέφουν την προσοχή τουσ στισ κύριεσ δραστηριÞτητέσ τουσ εκποιώντασ στοιχεία ενεργητικού που δεν συνδέονται µε αυτέσ. Ο κ. ΠροβÞπουλοσ είπε Þτι ήδη καταρτίζεται και θα τεθεί σε εφαρµογή το 2015 ένασ «κώδικασ δεοντολογίασ» για τισ συναλλαγέσ µε δανειολήπτεσ που βρίσκονται σε οικονοµικέσ δυσκολίεσ. ΣκοπÞσ αυτού είναι η µέγιστη δυνατή αποπληρω-

µή µη εξυπηρετούµενων δανείων και η ελάφρυνση τησ πίεσησ επί των δανειοληπτών. ΑναφερÞµενοσ στουσ λÞγουσ που η ύφεση στην Ελλάδα ήταν τÞσο βαθιά, είπε Þτι αυτÞ οφείλεται στο µέγεθοσ τησ απαιτούµενησ δηµοσιονοµικήσ προσαρµογήσ λÞγω των µεγάλων αρχικών ανισορροπιών, στη σχετικά κλειστή ελληνική οικονοµία µε αποτέλεσµα να πληγεί πρωτίστωσ η εγχώρια παραγωγή και Þχι οι εισαγωγέσ και στην αρχικά «αργή και αναποτελεσµατική» εφαρµογή διαρθρωτικών µεταρρυθµίσεων, ιδιωτικοποιήσεων και ρυθµίσεων για την είσπραξη φÞρων. Στο ερώτηµα κατά πÞσο το ελληνικÞ χρέοσ είναι βιώσιµο, ο διοικητήσ τησ Κεντρικήσ είπε Þτι αναµένει απÞ το Eurogroup να τηρήσει την απÞφασή του και να συµφωνήσει σε µέτρα βελτίωσησ τησ δυναµικήσ του χρέουσ τησ χώρασ, Þταν επικυρωθεί το πρωτογενέσ πλεÞνασµα. Ωσ προσ τον παρονοµαστή του δηµοσίου χρέουσ, το ΑΕΠ, είπε Þτι µπορεί να αυξηθεί µε την επιτάχυνση τησ αναδιάρθρωσησ του τοµέα υπηρεσιών και του ευρύτερου δηµοσίου τοµέα.



8 | ΑΓΟΡΑ | ∆·Í›‰È ÁÈ· ÙÔ˘˜ Ù˘¯ÂÚÔ‡˜ ÓÂfiÓ˘ÌÊÔ˘˜ Ù˘ ∂ÏÏËÓÈ΋˜

H ÂÂÙÂȷ΋ Porsche 911 ÛÙËÓ ∫‡ÚÔ Η 911 50th Anniversary Edition είναι ένα ειδικÞ µοντέλο τησ Porsche που κατασκευάστηκε σε µÞλισ 1963 µοντέλα για να γιορτάζει µε αυτÞ τον τρÞπο τα 50 χρÞνια απÞ την κατασκευή τησ πρώτησ θρυλικήσ 911. Και Þπωσ εύκολα µπορεί να αντιληφθεί κανείσ, τα 1963 αντίτυπα συµβολίζουν και τη χρονιά κατασκευήσ του µοντέλου. Ένα απÞ αυτά τα µοντέλα βρέθηκε για µερικέσ µέρεσ στουσ εκθεσιακούσ χώρουσ τησ A.I. Motokinisi Ltd περιµένοντασ τον τυχερÞ ιδιοκτήτη τησ να την παραλάβει, έχοντασ µάλιστα και το πιστοποιητικÞ µε τον αριθµÞ 370 στην κατοχή του. Στοιχεία που κάνουν την επετειακή έκδοση να ξεχωρίζει σε σχέση µε τισ «απλέσ», εκτÞσ απÞ τουσ τροχούσ των 20 ιντσών, είναι οι λεπτοµέρειεσ απÞ χρώµιο στισ µπροστινέσ εισαγωγέσ αέρα αλλά και πίσω και µεταξύ των φωτιστικών σωµάτων. O άνθρωποσ που επιµελήθηκε το σχεδιασµÞ τησ 911 50th Anniversary Edition, είναι ο Tony Hatter, υπεύθυνοσ του σχεδιαστικού τµήµατοσ τησ Porsche.

™ÙȘ €2 25.000 ÔÈ ÂÈÛÊÔÚ¤˜ ·fi ÙÔ Cyta Santa Run Η αγάπη και ο ενθουσιασµÞσ µε τον οποίο ο κÞσµοσ τησ Κύπρου αγκάλιασε την εκδήλωση “Cyta Santa Run”, συµµετέχοντασ στην πιο µεγάλη φιλανθρωπική γιορτή των περασµένων Χριστουγέννων, είχαν ωσ αποτέλεσµα να συγκεντρωθούν εισφορέσ που έφτασαν τισ 25.000 υρώ για το ΑνιχνευτικÞ ΠρÞγραµµα Ακοήσ Νεογνών. Συγκεκριµένα, περισσÞτερεσ απÞ 100 εταιρείεσ, οργανώσεισ,σωµατεία, καθώσ και άτοµα, φίλοι, συνεργάτεσ, αλλά και στελέχη τησ ίδιασ τησ Cyta έλαβαν µέροσ στο µεγαλύτερο «µαραθώνιο Άγιων Βασίληδων» που διοργανώθηκε στην Κύπρο, ντύνοντασ τη Λευκωσία στα κÞκκινα και δείχνοντασ έµπρακτα τη στήριξή τουσ στο µήνυµα τησ εκδήλωσησ « Η επικοινωνία είναι δικαίωµα του κάθε παιδιού». ΣτÞχοσ τησ πρωτοβουλίασ ήταν το ΠρÞγραµµα να συνεχίσει να προσφέρεται δωρεάν σε Þλα τα νεογνά, διασφαλίζοντασ τη δυνατÞτητα Þλων των παιδιών για επικοινωνία. Υπενθυµίζεται Þτι κάθε χρÞνο το ΠρÞγραµµα αυτÞ παρέχεται δωρεάν σε 8-10 χιλιάδεσ νεογέννητα στην Κύπρο, µε αποτέλεσµα να εντοπίζονται ετήσια 20 περίπου περιστατικά µε προβλήµατα ακοήσ. Τα περιστατικά αυτά είναι σηµαντικÞ να τύχουν χειρισµού στα πρώτα στάδια τησ ζωήσ των βρεφών, ώστε αυτά να αναπτύξουν έγκαιρα το λÞγο και τισ δυνατÞτητεσ επικοινωνίασ.

¢˘Ó·ÌÈ΋ ·ÚÔ˘Û›· Ù˘ Leptos ÛÙ· ∂ÌÈÚ¿Ù· Επιτυχιών συνέχεια για την Leptos Estates µε την δυναµική παρουσία τησ σε διεθνείσ εκθέσεισ, σεµινάρια και φÞρουµ σε διάφορεσ χώρεσ τησ Μέσησ Ανατολήσ και του Αραβικού ΚÞλπου µε το ξεκίνηµα τησ φετινήσ χρονιάσ. Για άλλη µια φορά η Leptos Estates ανέλαβε την πρωτοβουλία να παρουσιάσει τα προϊÞντα και τισ υπηρεσίεσ τησ και να κατορθώσει έτσι την δηµιουργία στενών επαγγελµατικών σχέσεων µε τουσ συµβούλουσ πωλήσεων σε έναν απÞ τουσ µεγαλύτερουσ και πιο αξιÞπιστουσ οίκουσ Ακινήτων µε έδρα την περιοχή του Αραβικού ΚÞλπου. Η συνάντηση πραγµατοποιήθηκε στα γραφεία των νέων εταίρων τησ, “HMG Properties” στο Ντουµπάι. Κατά τη διάρκεια ειδικών σεµιναρίων παρουσιάστηκαν µε πλήρη λεπτοµέρεια Þλα τα αναπτυξιακά προγράµµατα και τα επενδυτικά σχέδια του Οµίλου ΛεπτÞσ και δÞθηκε επίσησ ιδιαίτερη έµφαση στη µÞνιµη άδεια παραµονήσ και απÞκτηση Ευρωπαϊκήσ υπηκοÞτητασ, που προσφέρονται στην Κύπρο.

∏ ∫∂∞¡π∆∞ οÓÂÈ Ù· ‰¿ÛË ¯ÒÚÔ ÂÎ·›‰Â˘Û˘ Η ΚΕΑΝΙΤΑ θέλησε να µεταφέρει στα παιδιά την αγάπη τησ για τη φύση µέσα απÞ το εκπαιδευτικÞ πρÞγραµµα «Μαθαίνω για τα ∆άση» (LEAF – Learning About Forests) του οποίου είναι περήφανη χορηγÞσ. ΠρÞκειται για ένα διεθνέσ πρÞγραµµα στÞχοσ του οποίου είναι να ενθαρρύνει σχολεία και εκπαιδευτικούσ, ώστε να συµπεριλάβουν στισ εκπαιδευτικέσ τουσ δραστηριÞτητεσ και τα δάση. Η έναρξη του προγράµµατοσ στην Κύπρο έγινε µε βιωµατικÞ εργαστήρι που διοργάνωσε η περιβαλλοντική οργάνωση CYMEPA, η οποία διαχειρίζεται το πρÞγραµµα, και το Υπουργείο Παιδείασ και Πολιτισµού, σε συνεργασία µε την Ελληνική Εταιρεία Προστασίασ τησ Φύσησ. Το εργαστήρι πραγµατοποιήθηκε στο ΠεριφερειακÞ ∆ηµοτικÞ Σχολείο Ιαµατικήσ και στο παραπλήσιο δάσοσ και απευθυνÞταν σε 35 εκπαιδευτικούσ απÞ τα σχολεία που συµµετέχουν στο πρÞγραµµα φέτοσ. ΣτÞχοσ του εργαστηρίου ήταν η προετοιµασία των εκπαιδευτικών που θα υλοποιήσουν µε τουσ µαθητέσ τουσ εκπαιδευτικέσ δραστηριÞτητεσ µέσα στα δάση.

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Η Ελληνική Τράπεζα, ανταµείβοντασ τουσ νεÞνυµφουσ που το 2013 εµπιστεύτηκαν το Σχέδιο ΝεÞνυµφων, πρÞσφερε µετά απÞ κλήρωση, ένα ταξιδιωτικÞ πακέτο για δύο άτοµα σε έναν ευρωπαϊκÞ προορισµÞ. Τυχεροί είναι οι Κωνσταντίνοσ Συµεωνίδησ και Άντρη Χατζηευτυχίου απÞ τη Λευκωσία. Στη φωτογραφία το τυχερÞ ζευγάρι παραλαµβάνει το δώρο του απÞ τον ΛειτουργÞ Μάρκετινγκ, ∆ηµοσίων Σχέσεων και Πολιτιστικών ∆ραστηριοτήτων τησ Ελληνικήσ Τράπεζασ, Νίκο Παπαδιονυσίου. Το Σχέδιο ΝεÞνυµφων τησ Ελληνικήσ Τράπεζασ, προσφέρει ένα ειδικά διαµορφωµένο πακέτο προϊÞντων και υπηρεσιών που καλύπτει πλήρωσ τισ αυξηµένεσ ανάγκεσ, πριν και µετά τον αρραβώνα ή το γάµο.

°È· 6Ë Û˘Ó¯‹ ¯ÚÔÓÈ¿ Ë ¶ÂÙÚÔϛӷ ÛÙËÚ›˙ÂÈ ÙËÓ Europa Donna Η Πετρολίνα, στηρίζει την Europa Donna Κύπρου, καλύπτοντασ για 6η συνεχή χρονιά, τα έξοδα ενοικίου του Σπιτιού του οργανισµού στη Λάρνακα, το οποίο εξυπηρετεί γυναίκεσ µε εµπειρία καρκίνου του µαστού τησ περιοχήσ Λάρνακασ και Αµµοχώστου. Το Σπίτι τησ Europa Donna Κύπρου στη Λάρνακα λειτουργεί καθηµερινά, απÞ το 2009, παρέχοντασ πληροφÞρηση και προσφέροντασ ψυχολογική και συναισθηµατική στήριξη σε γυναίκεσ και άντρεσ, µε εµπειρία καρκίνου του µαστού και στισ οικογένειεσ τουσ. Στο Σπίτι, πραγµατοποιούνται συναντήσεισ και διοργανώνονται διαλέξεισ για θέµατα καρκίνου του µαστού ενώ προσφέρονται δωρεάν υπηρεσίεσ µέσω συγκεκριµένων προγραµµάτων που στοχεύουν στην ψυχολογική στήριξη και βελτίωση τησ ποιÞτητασ ζωήσ των ασθενών.

∂ÍÔÈÎÔÓfiÌËÛË ÂÓ¤ÚÁÂÈ·˜ ÁÈ· Foodpax Î·È µ.∏ÏÈ¿‰Ë Ì PowerStar Οι γνωστέσ εταιρείεσ κυπριακού εµπορίου Foodpax και Βάσσοσ Ηλιάδησ, µετά απÞ αναζήτηση του καταλληλÞτερου προϊÞντοσ για εξοικονÞµηση ηλεκτρικήσ ενέργειασ στουσ χώρουσ ψύξησ των προϊÞντων τουσ, επέλεξαν το σύστηµα Powerstar. Λύση που εξοικονοµεί ενώ παράλληλα δεν επηρεάζει την οµαλή λειτουργία των χώρων και την ποιÞτητα των προϊÞντων τουσ. Το Powerstar® είναι ένασ ειδικά κατασκευασµένοσ µετασχηµατιστήσ τριπλήσ περιέλιξησ, χαµηλήσ τάσησ, που έχει την ικανÞτητα να σταθεροποιεί αλλά και να µειώνει την τάση του ηλεκτρικού ρεύµατοσ µε βάση τισ απαιτήσεισ κάθε εγκατάστασησ χωρίσ συµβιβασµούσ στη λειτουργία και τισ συσκευέσ του χώρου που έχει εγκατασταθεί. Για περισσÞτερεσ πληροφορίεσ σχετικά µε το Powerstar στην ιστοσελίδα

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February 12 - 18, 2014 | WORLD MARKETS | 17

Markets wait for Eurozone Q4 growth indication ANALYSIS The euro zone and its constituent parts will report fourth quarter economic growth numbers at the end of the week, offering policy makers at the European Central Bank a needed snapshot of the bloc’s underlying strength. Recent evidence has been mixed. There has been general improvement but a growing disparity between Germany and France as polls suggest euro zone GDP will come it at 0.2% quarter on quarter for an year-on-year increase of just 0.4%. However, Germany’s projected 0.3% quarterly rise would translate to a relatively strong 1.3% for the year. The ECB sat on its hands last week but gave a fairly clear steer that action could be taken next month if new internal forecasts show a further deterioration in inflation falling so low as to trigger some concerns about deflation and growth. Bank President Mario Draghi pointedly flagged the Q4 GDP data as crucial to the bank’s thinking. But what to do? A small interest rate cut from 0.25% to somewhere just above zero is hardly going to be a game changer and the ECB has already said it won’t prime banks with long-term cheap money again unless they commit to lend into the real economy. Bank stress tests looming to check on the stability of the financial system. Those same banks are also being told to deleverage and build up capital. While a case can be made for more cheap long-term

loans, or LTROs, if banks do commit to pass the money on to businesses, it would not be straightforward for them. The ECB has discussed ceasing to soak up money it spent buying sovereign bonds during the euro zone’s debt crisis. Ending such “sterilisation” would inject about 175 bln euros of liquidity into the financial system. That would ease strains in euro zone money markets but probably do little to boost inflation, which the central bank wants. That leaves printing money, or “quantitative easing”, one of the ECB’s last unbroken taboos. It is a long way off if it comes at all. But as Japan has shown, it’s one of the few levers that could get prices rising again. Another big set piece during the week is the Bank of England’s quarterly inflation report. All eyes will be on Governor Mark Carney and his ability to persuade markets and British people and companies that interest rates won’t rise soon. He is expected to give some indication about what path “forward guidance” - the expectations of what will happen will take after the UK unemployment rate shot down to his trigger point for potential rate rises in months, rather than the years he expected it to take. The BoE is likely to be less specific than before, and may introduce something like the U.S. Federal Reserve’s system of tracking the change views of individual policymakers. But an actual rate hike remains a long way off. Italy, meanwhile, is braced for a credit rating review from Moody’s on Friday. The agency has a Baa2 rating -

two notches above junk — with a negative outlook so there could be some risk of a downgrade although recent data suggest the economy could have grown in the last quarter of 2013 for the first time since mid-2011. Any data or set-piece economic event during the week will fade in importance, however, if the rout in emerging markets continues. Central banks in Turkey, India, and Hungary have been struggling to contain huge investment outflows that have knocked their currencies down. The flip side is that developed markets are being threatened by imported disinflation from cheaper imports and their exporters risk becoming uncompetitive. “Developments in global money and financial market conditions and related uncertainties, notably in the emerging market economies, may have the potential to negatively affect (euro zone) economic conditions,” the ECB’s Draghi said last week. The drive for much of the emerging currency flight has been concern about slowing growth in China and the U.S. Fed’s withdrawal of monetary stimulus based on an improving economy. China reports import and export data this week, and the U.S. reports industrial and manufacturing output, all of which should go to the heart of the twin drivers. But last Friday’s robust U.S. jobs data made it unlikely that the Fed would change its stimulus-tapering plans - to the chagrin of some emerging markets.

The global economy without steroids Economic growth is back. Not only are the United States, by more than 50% for a few months. This scenario has the potential to disrupt growth in those Europe, and Japan finally expanding at the same time, but developing countries are also regaining strength. As a result, emerging economies that have failed to take advantage of the world GDP will rise by 3.2% this year, up from 2.4% in 2013 – recent capital inflows by pursuing reforms. The likely rise in meaning that 2014 may well be the year when the global interest rates will put considerable pressure on countries with large current-account deficits and high levels of foreign debt – economy turns the corner. The fact that the advanced economies are bouncing back is a result of five years of credit expansion. Indeed, last summer, when speculation that the Fed would good news for everyone. But, for the emerging and developing economies that dominated global growth over the last five soon begin to taper its purchases of long-term assets (so-called years, it raises an important question: Now, with high-income quantitative easing), financial-market pressures were strongest in markets suspected of countries joining them, is having weak fundamentals. business as usual good Turkey, Brazil, Indonesia, enough to compete? India, and South Africa – The simple answer is no. Just as an athlete might use By Sri Mulyani Indrawati dubbed the “Fragile Five” – were hit particularly hard. steroids to get quick results, Similarly, some emergingwhile avoiding the tough market currencies have come workouts that are needed to under renewed pressure in develop endurance and ensure long-term health, some emerging economies have relied on recent days, triggered in part by the devaluation of the short-term capital inflows (so-called “hot money”) to support Argentine peso and signs of a slowdown in Chinese growth, as growth, while delaying or even avoiding difficult but necessary well as doubts about these economies’ real strengths amid economic and financial reforms. With the US Federal Reserve generally skittish market sentiment. Like the turbulence last set to tighten the exceptionally generous monetary conditions summer, the current bout of market pressure is mainly that have driven this “easy growth,” such emerging economies affecting economies characterized by either domestic political will have to change their approach, despite much tighter room tensions or economic imbalances. But, for most developing countries, the story has not been for maneuver, or risk losing the ground that they have gained so bleak. Financial markets in many developing countries have in recent years. As the Fed’s monetary-policy tightening becomes a reality, not come under significant pressure – either in the summer or the World Bank predicts that capital flows to developing now. Indeed, more than three-fifths of developing countries – countries will fall from 4.6% of their GDP in 2013 to around 4% many of which are strong economic performers that benefited in 2016. But, if long-term US interest rates rise too fast, or from pre-crisis reforms (and thus attracted more stable capital policy shifts are not communicated well enough, or markets inflows like foreign-direct investment) – actually appreciated become volatile, capital flows could quickly plummet – possibly last spring and summer.

Furthermore, returning to the athletic metaphor, some have continued to exercise their muscles and improve their stamina – even under pressure. Mexico, for example, opened its energy sector to foreign partnerships last year – a politically difficult reform that is likely to bring significant long-term benefits. Indeed, it arguably helped Mexico avoid joining the Fragile Five. Stronger growth in high-income economies will also create opportunities for developing countries – for example, through increased import demand and new sources of investment. While these opportunities will be more difficult to capture than the easy capital inflows of the quantitative-easing era, the payoffs will be far more durable. But, in order to take advantage of them, countries, like athletes, must put in the work needed to compete successfully – through sound domestic policies that foster a business-friendly pro-competition environment, an attractive foreign-trade regime, and a healthy financial sector. Part of the challenge in many countries will be to rebuild macroeconomic buffers that have been depleted during years of fiscal and monetary stimulus. Reducing fiscal deficits and bringing monetary policy to a more neutral plane will be particularly difficult in countries like the Fragile Five, where growth has been lagging. As is true of an exhausted athlete who needs to rebuild strength, it is never easy for a political leader to take tough reform steps under pressure. But, for emerging economies, doing so is critical to restoring growth and enhancing citizens’ wellbeing. Surviving the crisis is one thing; emerging as a winner is something else entirely. Sri Mulyani Indrawati, Indonesia’s former finance minister, is Managing Director and COO of the World Bank. © Project Syndicate, 2014.

February 12 - 18, 2014


Pound-less Scotland could face euro-like troubles By Oren Laurent President, Banc De Binary

An independent Scotland is no longer the distant dream of Scottish right-wingers, but has now become a realistic prospect. So much so that the topic has sparked fierce debate over whether the currency will also be separate from the British pound, and what best suits the interest of both Scotland and the remainder of the United Kingdom. And you know I can’t resist joining a good debate. On September 18, Scots will vote in a referendum on whether the country should end its three-century-long union with England. This comes after the ruling Scottish National Party unveiled plans for independence, according to which Scotland would keep the pound and remain in the EU but would collect its own taxes and have its own military. This is what the SNP are proposing. They are encouraging Scots to vote for independence on the grounds of keeping the pound. Of course, Edinburgh wants this. Scotland would not want to join the shaky euro, and it would struggle to support its huge banking industry if it were to create its own, probably weaker, currency. Yet the pound can certainly not be taken for granted. What is to say that the rest of the UK will allow an independent Scotland to share it?

When Bank of England Governor Mark Carny addressed Scottish business leaders at the end of January, he was careful not to take sides on the topic of independence and ideology, but he did deliver a cautionary tale about economic realities and practicalities. He warned that a fully independent Scotland with the pound would be exposed to similar risks as we have witnessed in the euro zone, from debt crises to divergence in economic performance. Carney’s opinion is that a currency union could only be effective if the country relinquishes some degree of national sovereignty and abides by tight fiscal rules. The Scottish National Party was quick to use his speech to promote their agenda; finance Secretary John Swinney said that Carney provided a “sensible analysis of how a currency union can work”. I’m not convinced. Carney listed both the potential advantages and disadvantages of currency union. To me, his conclusion was clear: that if Scotland votes in favour of independence, a decision which is beyond his control, and if they are permitted to continue sharing a currency, which has not yet been decided, then the less economic independence and the greater banking cooperation, the better. That is not to say that if they do become independent and share the currency, that this would be more economically beneficial than the current status quo. British Prime Minister David Cameron also voiced his opinion last week, urging Scots to stay in the union. Politically and economically at least, I am convinced that

this option is the most beneficial to all. The United Kingdom is a respected global authority, with strength in numbers. Besides, the deep economic integration between Scotland and the rest of the UK is a natural consequence of being the same sovereign nation, and is advantageous to all parties. Currently, the number of Scots opposed to independence outnumbers those in support, but as the debate becomes heated, more are turning to a ‘yes’ vote. A recent poll revealed that 37% are for independence, 44%

are against and 19% remain unsure. Let’s hope that come September, Scots will understand that the SNP is not just waging an ideological campaign, but proposing a flawed economic plan.

Markets wait for Yellen’s testimony Currency markets were on a wait-andsee mode on Tuesday ahead of congressional testimony by new U.S. Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen in quiet market conditions in view of a holiday in Japan, while the Australian dollar benefited from an upbeat business survey. The dollar index eased 0.1% to 80.544, having dropped to as low as 80.498 at one point, its lowest level since January 29, according to Reuters data. Against the yen, the dollar eased 0.1% to 102.16 yen. The Australian dollar touched a onemonth high of $0.9016, getting a boost after a survey showed that Australian business conditions rose to its highest in nearly three years in January.

The Aussie dollar last fetched $0.9004, up 0.6% from late U.S. trade on Monday. There was probably some stop-loss buying at levels above $0.9000 that added to the Aussie dollar’s earlier rise, Satoshi

Late on Tuesday newly appointed Fed chief Yellen will take questions from U.S. lawmakers, some hostile to the central bank, who will want to know how committed she is to winding back

FOREX COMMENTARY & TECHNICAL ANALYSIS Okagawa, senior global markets analyst for Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation in Singapore told Reuters. The euro rose 0.2% to $1.3670. Earlier, it touched a two-week high of $1.3679.

exceptional stimulus measures. Her testimony comes at a tricky time given two months of soft employment growth and as a deadline looms on raising

the U.S. government borrowing limit before a possible debt default. Analysts generally assume Yellen will reiterate the Fed will continue tapering its asset buying, as long as the economy improves as expected, while reaffirming a commitment to keeping rates low for a long time to come. “We expect her messaging to be consistent with prior communications,” JPMorgan analysts wrote in a report to clients. “We see no reasons why Chairman Yellen will front-run the FOMC in March, especially while waiting for the outcome of one more jobs report for additional clarity on the underlying trend in labour markets.”

Disclaimer: The commentary appearing on this page is for indication purposes only and Eurivex does not take any responsibility for investment action taken. Nothing in this report should be considered to constitute investment advice. It is not intended, and should not be considered, as an offer, invitation, solicitation or recommendation to buy or sell any of the financial instruments described herein. Trading on leverage is very risky and may lead to losses.

February 12 - 18, 2014 | MARKETS | 19

No refuge in the Swissie the widespread conviction that their industry faced imminent demise. The main explanation: the so-called death of the Swiss banking secrecy. In its latest move to increase transparency, late last year the country signed onto an international convention, agreeing to exchange data with 60 countries. Under this OECD-coordinated convention, the Swiss government can call on large private banks to turn over confidential information to international tax watchdogs. Already, the US government has started investigations of more than a dozen Swiss banks. Most of the 280 or so Swiss banks have an opportunity to wipe the slate clean under a recently announced Swiss-American accord, but only if they pay penalties of up to 50% of the rogue client’s account balance. While this might be healthy over the long-term, this is obviously not a development that is conducive to capital inflows in the short-term. Swiss banking deleveraging is largely over. Like the rest of the global financial sector,

Marcuard’s Market update by GaveKal Research As we all know, markets have endured one of the worst starts to a year on record. Risk assets all around the world have sold off, while safe haven plays have rallied. The US government ten-year yield fell from 3% to as low as 2.6%, the US dollar has gained significantly against emerging market currencies, and the trade-weighted yen has gained more than 4%. Interestingly, the Swiss franc, another classic safe haven asset, has actually lost -1.4% on a trade-weighted basis. Why might the dynamics of the Swiss franc be changing? Consider the following: The Swiss private banking model is looking uncertain. During a recent visit to Geneva, we noted a palpable sense of despondency in the air. Now granted, Swiss private bankers are not known to be the cheeriest bunch, but we were still struck by

Swiss banks undertook a large-scale deleveraging exercise after the Lehman disaster. By some estimates, as much as CHF200bn flowed back into Switzerland between 2007 and 2012. For an economy of around CHF600bn this represents a very sizeable capital repatriation and helps to explain the consistent strength of the franc. In 2013, however, Swiss banks started lending to foreigners again and Switzerland is on track to record the first annual outflows from banks in a decade. Needless to say, this is a very significant reversal. A normalization of EMU financial conditions. As our regular readers know, we are still debating just how much structural healing has taken place in the eurozone. Having said that, there is little doubt that financial conditions have improved in Europe. And since the fat tail risk of an imploding euro was one of the big tailwinds for the franc over the past four years, this is another reason to expect a weaker currency

going forward. The CHF is overvalued. This last point is probably the least important one, since the Swissie has been overvalued for a very long time. Nevertheless, given the above points one could expect the valuation argument to start to matter a bit more over the near future. There are of course risks to the scenario of a weaker Swiss franc—the most obvious one being a flare-up in the EMU crisis. But given that the Swiss central bank is committed to maintaining the franc’s ceiling against the euro, imposed since September 2011, the downside is at least contained. Another tailwind for the franc is Switzerland’s considerable current account surplus, which amounts to around 10% of GDP. But all things considered, there is not much support for the franc. And for investors looking for safety, we would recommend the long end of the US bond market and other “safe” US assets instead.

Japan: A Shelter From Deflation success rate has been impressive so far. The latest non-food CPI reading of 1.3% compares to –0.5% ten months ago. In the last couple of weeks, inflation expectations rose substantially to reach 2.1% on a fiveyear time frame. Under “Abenomics,” growth is picking up faster than capacity expansion; the resulting narrowing output gap also points to more upward price pressure. The question, of course, is whether Japan can continue to win its battle if other OECD countries don’t. Recent concerns about the state of the global economy have sent safe-haven flows into Japan, making the Bank of Japan’s job all the harder. Our short-term view is that Japan is on top of this. As we have said before, much of the success of Abenomics depends on maintaining a “wealth effect,” and a psychological sense that Japan is restoring its manifest destiny as a major global economy. Hence, we expect Japan to respond

Marcuard’s Market update by GaveKal Research One key cloud over the global economic landscape is very weak corporate pricing power. After last week’s European Central Bank meeting, we saw Mario Draghi peppered with more questions about deflation than about the traditional eurocrisis bugbears. The US recovery faces a similar challenge. The all-around fear is that deflation will prevent the OECD’s struggling economies from reaching escape velocity. Is there an exception? Yes, in Japan—the only major economy providing any recognizable shelter from deflation. Japan is winning the battle against deflation through sheer determination. Its central bank is aggressively printing, and has essentially committed to keep doing so until its goal of 2% inflation is achieved. Its

to the current challenges with ever-more monetary aggression. In this sense, Japan’s market should be seen as a relative shelter from deflation. But winning the country’s two decade long battle with deflation will take more than just printing madly. Over the longer term, we recommend watching for two key variables: i) a sustained pick-up in the velocity of money, and ii) increases in nominal wages. While recently there have been early signs of rising wages, we expect that a bigger boost to real wages, domestic demand and eventually nominal wages, will come via lower energy bills. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has committed to re-open nuclear plants, and recently the political winds seem to be shifting to his side. This is underlined by the defeat of two anti-nuclear candidates, including former Prime Minister Morihiro Hosokawa, in Sunday’s Tokyo gubernatorial election. This sign of political focus is one key reason we would remove the hedges on Japanese equities we recommended last month amid signs of rising political risk. If there are black clouds, it is on the inability of Japanese banks to outperform the

Disclaimer: This information may not be construed as advice and in particular not as investment, legal or tax advice. Depending on your particular circumstances you must obtain advice from your respective professional advisors. Investment involves risk. The value of investments may go down as well as up. Past performance is no guarantee for future performance. Investments in foreign currencies are subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Marcuard Cyprus Ltd is regulated by the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission (CySec) under License no. 131/11.

The Financial Markets Interest Rates

benchmark index given all the free money that the BoJ provided. This shows that banks are sitting on money rather than facilitating credit creation. Until the banks or the government find ways to “activate” the stock of money (hopes are on structural changes which unlock Japan’s productivity potentials), Japan remains a tactical trade that is 100% dependent on monetary aggression.





Belarussian Ruble British Pound * Bulgarian Lev Czech Koruna Danish Krone Estonian Kroon Euro * Georgian Lari Hungarian Forint Latvian Lats Lithuanian Litas Maltese Pound * Moldavan Leu Norwegian Krone Polish Zloty Romanian Leu Russian Rouble Swedish Krona Swiss Franc Ukrainian Hryvnia


9680 1.6417 1.4315 20.1405 5.4623 11.4535 1.3661 1.719 227.46 0.51446 2.5274 0.3143 13.4175 6.1238 3.0601 3.2687 34.7988 6.472 0.8958 8.41


0.9008 1.1085 7.7571 62.425 102.33 1070.67 1.2039 1.2689


0.3770 6.9608 24721.00 3.5199 0.7080 0.2823 1502.00 0.3850 3.6413 3.7502 11.1283 3.6729

Azerbaijanian Manat AZN Kazakhstan Tenge KZT Turkish Lira TRY Note: * USD per National Currency

0.7827 155.55 2.2147


Australian Dollar * Canadian Dollar Hong Kong Dollar Indian Rupee Japanese Yen Korean Won New Zeland Dollar * Singapore Dollar MIDDLE EAST & AFRICA

Base Rates

LIBOR rates


0-0,25% 0.50% 0.25% 0-0,1% 0-0,25%

Swap Rates








0.15 0.48 0.20 0.11 -0.01

0.20 0.50 0.23 0.13 0.01

0.23 0.52 0.26 0.14 0.02

0.33 0.62 0.35 0.20 0.08

0.55 0.88 0.51 0.36 0.20









0.41 0.88 0.46 0.20 0.06

0.77 1.25 0.60 0.21 0.15

1.20 1.59 0.79 0.26 0.30

1.57 1.88 1.01 0.33 0.49

2.20 2.31 1.44 0.51 0.89

2.78 2.76 1.91 0.80 1.34

Exchange Rates Major Cross Rates


Opening Rates

1 USD 1 EUR 1 GBP 1 CHF 1.3658 0.7322

100 JPY

















0.8757 114.20

Weekly movement of USD
















1.6418 1.3658 102.31 0.8959
















Last Week %Change 1.6283 1.3525 101.06 0.9021

-0.83 -0.98 +1.24 -0.69

Bahrain Dinar Egyptian Pound Iranian Rial Israeli Shekel Jordanian Dinar Kuwait Dinar Lebanese Pound Omani Rial Qatar Rial Saudi Arabian Riyal South African Rand U.A.E. Dirham ASIA

February 12 - 18, 2014


Bitcoin plunges after Mt. Gox halts withdrawals The price of the digital currency bitcoin slid to its lowest level in nearly two months on Monday after bitcoin digital marketplace Mt. Gox said a halt on withdrawals it announced on Friday would continue indefinitely after it detected “unusual activity.” The bitcoin price varied dramatically from one exchange to another, with Tokyo-based Mt. Gox, the best known operator of a bitcoin digital marketplace, recording one of the biggest drops for the day. On the Mt. Gox platform the currency plunged to as low as $500 early on Monday, down more than 27% from Friday’s final price of $692, according to the Mt. Gox website. It last traded at $595.74, off nearly 14% from Friday. “This technical issue is of a much larger intensity than we’ve seen in the past,” said Sebastien Galy, currency strategist at Societe Generale in New York. “The market may be realising that there are issues which are specific to these forms of currencies.” The bitcoin in recent months started to gain wider acceptance, with and the Sacramento Kings basketball team both saying they would begin to accept the currency. More recently, the digital currency has

drawn increased scrutiny. New York state’s top bank regulator revealed plans in late January to regulate businesses handling transactions in bitcoin this year. The bitcoin price started falling fast on Friday when Mt. Gox said it was temporarily halting withdrawals due to unexplained technical issues. In an updated statement on Monday, Mt. Gox said withdrawals were on hold indefinitely after it “has detected unusual activity on its bitcoin wallets and performed investigations during the past weeks. This confirmed the presence of transactions

which need to be examined more closely.” Mt. Gox said a “bug in the bitcoin software” could allow transaction details to be altered. In effect, someone on the network could alter transaction details to make it appear a transfer of bitcoins from one digital wallet to another had not occurred when in fact it had. This might cause the transfer to be repeated. A bitcoin wallet is an application that stores bitcoins for the currency’s users. Mt. Gox said the issue was not limited to the exchange and “affects all transactions

where bitcoins are being sent to a third party.” It said the withdrawal suspension would be in effect until the issue has been resolved. CoinDesk, which launched the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index in September, removed Mt. Gox from its index on Monday, citing its “persistent failure to meet the index’s standards for inclusion.” “These recent withdrawal restrictions are just the latest in a series of issues which have made Mt. Gox’s inclusion in the BPI problematic,” CoinDesk said. On CoinDesk’s bitcoin index, the bitcoin price was lower but not by nearly as much as on the Mt. Gox platform. The CoinDesk index showed bitcoin at $667.79 on late Monday afternoon, down about 5% from Friday’s close of $703.57. Its low for the day was around $540 versus $500 on Mt. Gox. On both platforms, the price was still around the lowest since late December. The price had topped $1,000 as recently as late January. “With the volatility in the currency being as much as it is, it’s going to take some time before we get enough of a comfort level from investors and merchants to enable it to be used ubiquitously,” said Darrin Peller, managing director at Barclays in New York.

Emerging markets’ submerging currencies For many emerging economies, 2014 has gotten off to a grim start. Concern over the Chinese economy’s marked slowdown and the Argentine peso’s steep slide against the US dollar has triggered heavy selling pressure on an array of emerging-market currencies. But the current volatility does not portend sustained weaker growth in emerging economies as a whole. Differentiation is needed, and that is what financial markets are now doing. The scale of the battering varies widely from country to country. For example, the problems currently dogging Argentina are anything but a surprise. On the contrary, they are the near-inevitable result of years of policy mismanagement that has spawned high inflation, a badly overvalued currency, and massive erosion of foreign reserves.

beginning of February. The reasons are mainly homegrown: a poor investment climate, heavy capital outflows, and a shriveling current-account surplus. A look at Latin America also reveals wide regional differences. The Argentine peso, the region’s main culprit, has plummeted by 19% this year against the US dollar. In Brazil, the real’s losses in 2014 have been comparatively mild, but this comes on the heels of the hefty depreciation last year. Capital is also heading for the exit in Mexico and Chile. The region’s reliance on commodities is fraying nerves. If Chinese economic growth turns out to be weaker than expected, commodity prices and exports are likely to fall, undermining Latin American countries’ growth. However, with global industrialproduction indicators climbing since the second half of 2013, pointing especially to improvements in the advanced economies, gloomy forecasts for commodity markets seem off the mark. So far, Asian currency losses have been limited. The South Korean won has experienced the largest slide, with a loss of 3% from the start of the year to the beginning of February (though this comes in the wake of a protracted upward trend). The Indian and Indonesian currencies have been weathering the storm quite well, but both fell steeply last year. The Indian rupee, burdened by a chronic current-account deficit, stubbornly high inflation, and a sharp slowdown in growth, lost 11% year on year by the end of 2013. Paradoxically, China, the country currently under the brightest spotlight, is the only major emerging economy whose currency rose slightly against the US dollar in January. Given the enormous challenges that China faces – from rebalancing its growth model to addressing credit and realestate bubbles – this is remarkable. Chinese officials are poised to tighten monetary policy and impose regulatory measures to

By Michael Heise By contrast, the currencies of Central and Eastern Europe’s emerging markets have remained relatively stable. For example, thanks to Poland’s robust economic performance, the z∏oty has essentially maintained its exchange rate against the euro, slipping 2.2% since the start of the year (as of the beginning of February). The Hungarian forint lost slightly more than 5% against the single currency over the same period, but this is less sharp than in the past, when the country’s macroeconomic problems made the exchange rate far more sensitive to shifts in market sentiment. The stabilization of the eurozone economy and the reduction of imbalances have helped to improve the growth outlook for Central and Eastern European countries. Furthermore, most of these countries have made progress taming their own imbalances. By contrast, the Russian ruble has continued its lengthy nosedive this year, tumbling by more than 5.5% against the euro by the

curb debt momentum, which is bound to mean sacrificing short-term economic growth in order to put growth back on a stable footing. Evidently, the markets think the authorities are up to the task. Turkey, a country whose enormous growth potential is marred by major imbalances, has not been so fortunate. The Turkish lira is being pilloried, sliding more than 7% against the euro in January and 24% since the middle of last year. But Turkey’s vulnerability to an abrupt shift in financial markets from risk-on to risk-off was foreseeable. Yawning current-account deficits (funded mainly by short-term capital inflows), domestic political uncertainty, and past episodes of unorthodox monetary policy have all undermined investor confidence in recent months. As in China, the necessary adjustment processes will weigh on shortterm growth, though the medium- and longterm outlook is positive. The financial markets are evidently punishing the currencies of countries that, due to macroeconomic imbalances or political instability, are susceptible to external shocks of any kind. Indeed, some players fear that the spiral of depreciation, higher inflation, and rising interest rates

could broaden out into a full-scale crisis of confidence. But, while the further withdrawal of capital cannot be ruled out, not all investors swim with the tide. With prices in the affected countries at a much more favorable level, confidence-building policy measures could quickly encourage forward-looking investors to test the water. Broadly speaking, devaluations can help boost competitiveness and reduce external deficits. But in the short term, they can exacerbate economic problems by inciting higher wage demands, fueling inflationary pressure, and boosting external-financing costs. In these circumstances, monetary policy must perform a balancing act. In order to counter a devaluation-fueled rise in domestic inflation, the central bank needs to raise key interest rates – but without throttling the economy. Policymakers are more likely to succeed to the extent that domestic reforms address macroeconomic imbalances and other obstacles to long-term growth. Michael Heise is Chief Economist at Allianz SE. © Project Syndicate, 2014.

February 12 - 18, 2014 | WORLD MARKETS | 21

U.S. bank earnings: Quality a concern, but balance sheets strengthen At roughly the halfway point of all U.S. bank fourthquarter earnings reporting to date, some clear themes have emerged, according to DBRS Ratings. “Indeed, the quality of earnings continues to be an issue; banks continue to offset weak revenues with reserve releases and/or low provisioning levels, as the credit environment remains benign,” said Michael Driscoll, senior vice president, US Financial Institutions Group at DBRS. DBRS expects the curtailment of significant reserve releases later in 2014, especially if loan growth improves as we currently expect. Positively, balance sheets continue to strengthen with higher capital and lower debt levels, while liquidity remains ample. Moreover, loan growth was evident in the quarter, especially in commercial lending, albeit at generally modest levels. Negatively, net interest margins are still being pressured while regulatory and compliance costs remain elevated. The rating agency said that banks have done a good job managing the expenses they can control, mitigating some of the revenue pressures. However additional expense cuts

are likely. Branch networks continue to be scrutinized for cost saves through downsizing, sales, closures and/or streamlining. Further impacting the quality of earnings in the quarter, fee income was flat or declined, as mortgage origination and pipeline volumes dropped sharply sequentially, DBRS said. Offsetting some of the fee pressure were resilient capital market performances featuring strong investment banking, but subdued trading results. Additionally, asset management business fees generally increased driven by equity market valuation gains, as well as net investment inflows. Positively, DBRS notes that the retail investor has become more active after several cautious years following the last downturn. During their respective conference calls, several bank CEOs spoke positively about upcoming economic improvement and pent up loan demand, especially in the second half of 2014. Nonetheless, at present, intense competition for asset growth continues unabated with its attendant concerns of sowing the seeds of future credit problems.

QE tapering could weaken liquidity for EM companies The more highly leveraged companies in Turkey and South Africa, which have experienced significant currency depreciation relative to the US dollar, may be most at risk, according to Moody’s Investors Service. “However, the impact on our credit ratings may be more limited as these are already positioned to incorporate a variety of factors including the reliability of access to funding”, explained Tobias Wagner, analyst in the corporate finance team at Moody’s. The primary threat to liquidity of some emerging market companies as a consequence of US government tapering may lie in policy responses that impact the domestic macroeconomic environment and financial systems, including local banks. The rating agency added that government and monetary policy decisions that raise interest rates could pressure corporate cash flows, and also reduce headroom under financial covenants or credit availability where reliance is on uncommitted facilities. The EMEA Liquidity Stress Index (LSI), which rises if liquidity weakens, slightly increased to 14.7% in December 2013. This primarily reflects weaker operating performance for a few companies despite the overall trend of credit stabilisation, said Moody’s.

How fragile are emerging markets? Emerging-market equities and exchange rates are again under severe downward pressure, but are the underlying economies really as fragile as global traders seem to fear? The short answer, for a few, is probably “yes,” but for most, “not just yet.” For most countries, what we are seeing is a recalibration as investors incorporate the risk that China’s GDP might rise more slowly, the US Federal Reserve might start tightening monetary conditions more quickly, and policy backsliding in many countries might undermine potential growth. At the same time, Europe’s massive shift to a trade surplus (a key factor underpinning the region’s new-found stability) and the Japanese yen’s sharp depreciation are among myriad factors squeezing countries seeking to rein in currentaccount deficits.

By Kenneth Rogoff

It seems like only yesterday that Goldman Sachs analysts were celebrating the growth miracle of the “BRICS” (Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa) and the International Monetary Fund, in its April 2013 World Economic Outlook, was forecasting a three-speed global recovery led by emerging markets. What happened? The most popular culprit is the Fed, which has begun to taper its highly experimental policy of “quantitative easing,” or purchases of long-term assets aimed at supporting growth beyond what could be achieved with zero nominal interest rates. But the Fed’s role is almost certainly overblown. For one thing, the Fed’s retreat partly reflects growing confidence in the US economy, which should mean a stronger export market for most emerging economies. Moreover, the Fed’s modest tightening is being matched by a trend toward looser monetary policy in the eurozone and Japan; so, overall, advanced-country monetary policy remains highly accommodative. Uncertainty over China’s growth path is more fundamental. For more than a decade, China’s stunning growth has fueled a remarkable price boom that has flattered policymakers in commodity-exporting emerging markets from Russia to Argentina. Remember how the Argentines were able to thumb their noses at the pro-market “Washington Consensus” in favor of an interventionist “Buenos Aires consensus”? Now, not so much. China’s near-term growth is an open question, as its new leadership attempts to curb the unsustainable credit-fueled boom. Until recently, global markets had not seemed to recognize that a growth recession

was even a possibility. Certainly, if there ever is a pause in China’s heady growth, today’s emerging-market turmoil will seem like a mere hiccup compared to the earthquake that will ensue. There are other notable, if less consequential, fundamentals in the mix. The shale-gas revolution in the US is changing the global energy equation. Energy exporters such as Russia are feeling the downward pressure on export prices. At the same time, hyper-low-cost energy in the US is affecting Asian manufacturers’ competitiveness, at least for some products. And, as Mexico reforms its energy sector, the range of pressures on Asian manufacturing will expand; Mexico is already benefitting from cost pressures in China. Japan’s Abenomics is also important for some countries, as the sharp depreciation in the value of the yen puts pressure on Korea in particular and on Japan’s Asian competitors in general. In the long run, a Japanese resurgence would, of course, be beneficial to the region’s economies. Stability in the eurozone has been perhaps the single most important positive factor underpinning market confidence in the last year. But, as periphery countries move into currentaccount balance and northern countries such as Germany run massive surpluses, the flip side has been deterioration in emerging-market surpluses, heightening their vulnerabilities. At the core of emerging-market problems, however, is policy and political backsliding. Here, there are significant differences among countries. In Brazil, the government’s efforts to weaken the central bank’s independence and meddle in energy and lending markets have harmed growth. Turkey is suffering acute challenges to its democratic institutions, as well as government pressure on the central

bank. Russia’s failure to develop strong independent institutions has made it difficult for an entrepreneurial class to emerge and help diversify the economy. In India, central-bank independence remains reasonably strong, with the Reserve Bank of India now mulling a move to an inflation-targeting regime. But a sustained period of populist policies has weakened trend growth and exacerbated inflation. Nevertheless, some emerging markets are moving forward and stand to benefit from the turmoil if they are able to stay the course. Aside from Mexico, countries such as Chile, Colombia, and Peru are well positioned to gain from investments in institution-building. But, of course, new institutions can take decades, and sometimes longer, to consolidate. So, overall, how fragile are emerging markets? Unlike in the 1990’s, when fixed exchange rates were widespread, most countries now have shock-absorbing flexible rates. Indeed, today’s drama can be interpreted, in part, as a reflection of these shock absorbers at work. Emerging-market equities may have plummeted, but this, too, is a shock absorber. The real question is what will happen when the turmoil moves to debt markets. Many countries have built up substantial reserves, and are now issuing far more debt in domestic currency. Of course, the option of inflating away debt is hardly a panacea. Unfortunately, there is surely more drama to come over the next few years. Kenneth Rogoff, a former chief economist of the IMF, i s Professor of Economics and Public Policy at Harvard University. © Project Syndicate, 2014.

February 12 - 18, 2014


Barclays to slash “up to” 12,000 jobs, shares tumble 6% Ave rage bonus for investment bankers at £60,000

Barclays said it will cut 10,000 to 12,000 jobs this year from its global workforce of 140,000, even as it raised bonuses for investment bankers, prompting fury among politicians and unions who said it had not learned the lessons of the financial crisis. Stepping up efforts to cut costs, Barclays said up to 9% of employees could go, including 7,000 in Britain, where half of the affected staff had already been notified. Britain’s third-biggest bank said it paid 2.4 bln pounds in incentive awards last year after raising bonuses at the investment bank by 13% despite a slump in profits. The average bonus across the investment bank’s 26,200 staff was 60,100 pounds. The bank’s CEO Anthony Jenkins, who took the helm in 2012 after an interest rate rigging scandal, is attempting to improve culture and standards while also reducing risk and strengthening the balance sheet. He defended the bigger bonus pot, saying the bank had to recruit the best staff to compete with global rivals and continued to have “constructive” talks with investors over pay. “We need to recruit people from Singapore to San Francisco. We need the best people in the bank to drive long-term sustainable returns for our shareholders,” Jenkins told reporters during a conference call. “I understand that there will be some who feel that this decision is wrong. But it is the decision of the board and myself that this entirely is the right decision for the group and in the

long-term interests of shareholders,” he said. Shares in Barclays had dropped 6.5% to 257p in midday trading Tuesday, underperforming a 0.8% rise by the European bank index. Analysts said operating expenses were higher than expected and there was some disappointment at its capital ratio and that Jenkins did not increase his annual cost cutting target, which he said was already a “challenging” goal. The higher bonuses lifted the compensation-to-income ratio in the investment bank to 43.2% last year from 40% in 2012. Jenkins, who gave up his own bonus for 2013, said he still aimed for a ratio in the “mid-30s” across the bank.

Jenkins said banking was going through a “100-year transformation” as technology and cost pressures reshape the industry, and he was optimistic that Barclays was well set for a “pivotal” 2014. Investment bank profits slumped 37% last year to 2.5 bln pounds, as income fell 9% to 10.7 bln due largely to a fall in fixed income. The investment bank made a loss of 329 mln in the fourth quarter, hit by restructuring costs, a 220 mln pound charge for litigation and regulatory penalties and a 333 mln cost to pay a UK bank levy. Revenue in the fourth quarter from fixed income, currencies and commodities fell 16% from a year ago, echoing the weak performance across investment banks and not as steep a fall as seen at big rival Deutsche Bank. Barclays’ equities income rose 9% from a year ago, and advisory and underwriting income fell 5%. Barclays had already released headline results showing its earnings dropped by a third last year to 5.2 bln pounds, falling short of analyst forecasts due to the investment bank’s slump. The bank is successfully cutting its balance sheet, analysts said, and 196 bln pounds in the second half of last year was more than double its target, helped by 55 bln due to foreign exchange movements. Barclays said it would aim to cut at least another 63 bln pounds to get the balance sheet below 1.3 trln pounds, based on the UK regulator’s calculation of leverage exposure.

Market failure and political failure Markets can fail. But, as has been demonstrated in areas like air pollution, traffic congestion, spectrum allocation, and tobacco consumption, market mechanisms are often the best way for governments to address such failures. So why are such mechanisms now in retreat? Consider markets for emissions allowances, in which firms that can cheaply cut air pollution trade with those that cannot. A decade ago, the idea that such markets could achieve desired environmental goals at relatively low cost was widely recognized and implemented. Today, however, politics is killing “cap and trade.” In the United States, the highly successful cap-and-trade system for sulfur-dioxide emissions has effectively vanished. In Europe, the Emissions Trading System (ETS), the world’s largest market for carbon allowances, has become increasingly irrelevant as well. On both sides of the Atlantic, market-oriented environmental regulation has in effect been superseded over the last five years by older “command-andcontrol” approaches, by which the government dictates who should use which technologies, in what amounts, to reduce which emissions.

By Jeffrey Frankel Professor of Capital Formation and Growth at Harvard University Cap and trade was originally supposed to be a Republican idea in the US: its backers were those who considered themselves pro-market, not those who considered themselves pro-regulation. Most environmental organizations initially opposed it, with many believing it immoral for corporations to be able to pay for the right to pollute. Indeed, it was Ronald Reagan’s administration that pioneered the use of cap and trade to phase out leaded gasoline in the 1980’s. George H. W. Bush’s administration used it to reduce SO2 emissions from power plants in the 1990’s, and his son’s administration sought to use it to reduce SO2 and other emissions further in the 2000’s. The problem is not that cap and trade is an ivory-tower theory that cannot work in the real world; on the contrary, its performance surpassed expectations. In the 1980’s, it enabled lead to be phased out more rapidly than predicted and at an estimated annual savings of $250 million relative to the command-and-control approach. Similarly, emissions of SO2 were curbed at a much lower cost than even cap-and-trade proponents had predicted before 1995. As recently as 2008, the Republican candidate for US

president, Senator John McCain, had sponsored legislative proposals to use cap and trade to address emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. But Republican politicians now seem to have forgotten that this approach was once their policy. In 2009, they worked to defeat climatechange legislation by relying on anti-regulation rhetoric that demonized their own creation. This left only less market-friendly alternatives – especially after court cases upheld the validity of the 1970 Clean Air Act. Though such alternatives are less efficient, they are again the operative regime. Likewise, the European Union adopted the ETS in 2003 as a cost-effective way to achieve the commitments it had made under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol. The ETS rapidly became the world’s largest system for putting a market price on environmental damage. But now it has been pushed aside by other kinds of regulation. European directives require that 20% of energy must come from renewables by 2020. But, while policymakers have helped drive down the price of emissions permits in the ETS by mandating and subsidizing renewable energy, the supply of permits has not been reduced. As a result, demand now falls short of any binding constraint. Indeed, the price of permits fell below three euros a ton in April 2013, rendering the emissions-trading market almost irrelevant. This, in turn, has encouraged greater reliance on highly polluting coal – the worst energy source, from the standpoint of global warming. That would not have happened if the price mechanism still underpinned climate-change policy. Moreover, the EU’s renewables policy has also proved to be ruinously expensive. All of this should give pause to the European Council when it meets in March to consider how to extend the 2020 goals to 2030. There is a fascinating parallel between the evolution of American political attitudes toward market mechanisms in environmental regulation and Republican hostility to “Obamacare” (the 2010 Affordable Care Act). The core of Obamacare is an attempt to ensure that all Americans have health insurance, via the individual mandate. But it is a market-oriented program insofar as health insurers and health-care providers remain private and compete against one other. This was originally a conservative approach. The two major alternatives to it are much further removed from the marketplace: a “single payer” system, as in Canada (or America’s Medicare system for the elderly), with the government providing health insurance, or “socialized

medicine,” as in the United Kingdom (or the US Veterans Health Administration), with the government providing health care directly. The approach taken by Obamacare was proposed in conservative think tanks such as the Heritage Foundation and enacted in Massachusetts by Republican Governor Mitt Romney. But, by the time Obama adopted it, it had become anathema to Republicans, forcing Romney, the party’s presidential candidate in 2012, to run against his own record. The market failure in the case of air pollution is what economists call an “externality”: those who pollute do not bear the entire cost. The market failure in the case of health care is what economists call “adverse selection”: insurers may not provide insurance, especially to patients with pre-existing conditions, if they fear that healthy customers have already taken themselves out of the risk pool. But, again, government attempts to address market failures can themselves fail. In the case of the environment, command-and-control regulation is inefficient, discourages innovation, and can have unintended consequences (like Europe’s growing reliance on coal). In the case of health care, a national monopoly can forestall innovation and provide inadequate care with long waits. In general, the best government interventions target failures precisely – using cap and trade to put a price on air pollution, for example, or relying on the individual mandate to curtail adverse selection in health insurance – while letting market forces do the rest more efficiently than bureaucrats can. Jeffrey Frankel is Professor of Capital Formation and Growth at Harvard University. © Project Syndicate, 2014.

February 12 - 18, 2014 | GREECE | 23

Greece wants a return to bond markets Re -entry wou ld bo ost co nfidenc e an d highlight “e nvia ble ” strengths

The head of Greece’s debt management office has pressed the case for the crisis-hit country’s return to international capital markets, saying its re-entry would boost confidence and highlight strengths other states “would find enviable”, according to the Financial Times. Stelios Papadopoulos told the FT that he did not share concerns expressed privately by Greece’s international backers about Athens raising funds again from global investors. A “gradual” return would allow the rebuilding of a well-functioning bond market and encourage the return of longer term, or “real money” investors, he said. “It is the economic future of Greece – not its past – that we believe will be the key factor as institutional investors consider Greece’s return to the capital markets,” he was quoted by the FT as saying. Debt markets of crisis-hit eurozone “periphery” states have rallied strongly this year, with borrowing costs falling to multiyear lows. Despite widespread worries about the pace of reforms implemented by Greece and its political stability, yields on its

ten-year bonds have tumbled to just 7.6% – the lowest since May 2010 when the country’s debt woes first triggered a eurozone crisis. Ireland and Portugal returned to debt capital markets ahead of exiting international bailout programmes – which has encouraged expectations that Greece would follow. Fears have been expressed within the “Troika” overseeing Greece’s reform programme that such a move would distract Athens from crucial economic and fiscal reforms. However, Papadopoulos indicated a Greek return would be focused, at least initially, on rebuilding the depth and liquidity of its government bond market using small debt issues. The country’s official partners “also want to see Greece regain market access in a credible and permanent way”, he said. Although negotiations between Athens and international creditors remain fraught, Papadopoulos pointed out that the current debt servicing requirements of Greece – which defaulted in 2012 – were low and would be further improved by expected changes in its bailout terms. Moreover, Greece

would “achieve a current account surplus that will surprise on the upside and is returning to growth in 2014”. “These are features that most countries, developed and emerging, would find enviable,” Papadopoulos told the Financial Times. While this year’s turmoil in emerging markets had been triggered by sharp currency devaluations, Greece’s membership of the eurozone has lowered foreign exchange risks. The average maturity on Greece’s outstanding debt is 17 years – exceptionally high by international standards – and just 29 bln euros is held by the private sector. Last month, finance minister Yannis Stournaras told the FT that Athens could test markets in the second half of this year with an offer of 1.5-2 bln euros in five-year bonds. Papadopoulos said medium-term benchmark issues would help “highlight the comparative value of the Greek sovereign trade, facilitate corporate and bank issuances, all with a view to paving the way for a more comprehensive return to the markets down the road”.

KONE acquires ThyssenKrup p Elevators Hellas KONE SA (Hellas), one of the leading companies in the elevator and escalator industry, has acquired all the shares of ThyssenKrupp Elevators Hellas S.A., an elevator service company based in Athens, further enhancing its position in the Greek market. The acquisition complements KONE’s existing elevator maintenance and modernisation business. “Contrary to the general trend, KONE believes in Greece’s development and hence decisively further strengthens its position in the market of elevators. Thanks to the acquisition of ThyssenKrupp Elevators Hellas, we have become a strong player dedicated to the Greek market, and serving the people’s right to a smooth, safe, comfortable flow in and between buildings every day,” said Stelios Anastasiadis, Managing Director for KONE in Greece and Cyprus. ThyssenKrupp Elevators Hellas S.A. and KONE Hellas will be combining their operations under the KONE brand name

during the next few months. KONE entered Greece in 2004. Today it has more than 50 employees serving customers around the Athens region. ThyssenKrupp Elevators Hellas has operated in Greece since 2002 and its employees have entered the KONE family as of November 26, 2013. KONE’s objective is to deliver the best ‘People Flow’ experience by developing and delivering solutions that enable people to move smoothly, safely, comfortably and without waiting in buildings in an increasingly urbanising environment. According to UN Population Division research data, urbanisation is considered to be the single most important global megatrend for the elevator and escalator industry and will drive demand in the years to come. In Greece, 61% of the population lives in urban areas and urban annual growth is estimated at a steady 0.6% rate for the upcoming decade.

The authorities in Athens have arrested the former chairman of defunct state lender Hellenic Postbank (TT) on charges of money laundering and fraud, police and court officials said. Prosecutors are looking into loans which TT granted in 2007-2012 without proper guarantees and which may have caused the bank losses of 500 mln euros. Angelos Filippidis, taken in handcuffs to Athens central police headquarters with a pack of reporters in pursuit, said

he had returned voluntarily from Istanbul, where he had been detained on a Greek arrest warrant. He has denied wrongdoing. The foreign ministry said Turkey had deported the banker. Filippidis, who was once president of one of Greece’s biggest football clubs, is among 25 people charged in the TT affair. They include businessmen Dimitris Kontominas and Lavrentis Lavrentiadis - who is already in custody pending trial over another banking investigation. Both men deny

Disgr ace d TT ba nk chief arr este d

wrongdoing. The financial crisis has led to public anger with a political and business elite widely viewed as privileged and corrupt, prompting prosecutors to step up corruption investigations. Hit by the Greek debt crisis, TT was deemed non-viable by the central bank and was wound down last year after efforts to sell it failed. The HFSF bank rescue fund then pumped about 4.5 bln euros into TT, stripped it of its bad loans and sold the rest to Eurobank in July as part of a wave of consolidation in the battered banking sector.

Electricity demand flat in December Electricity demand in the interconnected system, covering about 90% of total domestic demand, was almost flat in December compared to the same month last year. Demand in 2013 was down by 3.7% y-o-y, according to data issued by the Independent Power Transmission Operator (ADMIE). In terms of supply mix, in December renewables and lignite increased by 14% and 3% respectively, compared to December 2012, while supply from natural gas and hydro

was down by 8% and 39%, respectively. On a 2013 basis, hydro and renewables were up by 40% and 45%, respectively, while lignite and natural gas were down by 16% and 14%, respectively. “The significant decline of demand in 2013 is attributed to unfavourable weather conditions prevailing during peak seasons (warm winter and cool summer) and the impact of the economic crisis,” explained Vassilis Roumantzis,

analyst at the Investment Bank of Greece. “Assuming normal weather conditions this year, the return to economic growth after a prolonged recession should help demand to recover. On the supply front, the picture in 2013 was mixed as the significant increase in hydro (despite the decline in December) and the increasing penetration of photovoltaic plants resulted in the substantial reduction of lignite and natural gas contribution to the mix.

The island of Kefalonia is recovering from a series of earthquakes. The first, on January 26, registered 6.0 on the Richter scale. A second major quake, a little less powerful, hit a week later. There have also been hundreds of aftershocks. Euronews reporter, Michalis Arampatzoglu, experienced one when visiting bakery owner Giorgos Malioris. “We’re in psychological shock. You’ve felt yourselves the quake that just happened,” Malioris told Arampatzoglu. There is relief that the quakes did not claim any lives but residents, such as Christos Kiriakatos, have seen their homes destroyed.

“At the first earthquake the house took an inclination of 3 degrees to the left. At the second earthquake the house took the inclination that you see, which is 45 degrees. Luckily, I was not inside because I would be dead now,” Kiriakatos explained. Around 1,400 houses have been declared uninhabitable, leaving hundreds of families homeless. Mema Sinodinou has been living with her baby in a tent at a camp set up by the army at the Lyxouri stadium. “I don’t know if I can dream anymore. I’m mostly worried about her [her seven-month old daughter]”. The Lyxouri museum has been converted into a

distribution centre of food and water. Euronews’ Michalis Arampatzoglu explained: “The state, the church, private companies and residents have been sending supplies – which teams of volunteers have been helping to distribute.” Kefalonia is the largest of the Ionian Islands in western Greece and a popular tourist destination. Much of its infrastructure has remained intact – and residents told euronews that the island would be ready for the summer holiday season. Tourism is the highest-earning industry for the crisis-hit Greek economy, which is in its sixth year of recession.

Recove ry a nd r ebuilding in qua ke-hit Kefa lonia

February 12 - 18, 2014

24 | BACK PAGE |

Will U.S. stock buyers beat back the bear? WALL ST WEEK AHEAD After the S&P 500’s first weekly gain in a month, investors will see this week whether the U.S. stock market’s rally of the last two days is the shape of better things to come - or if this year’s weakness will turn into a full-fledged correction. At Friday’s close, the S&P 500 was up 0.8% for the week its first weekly gain since early January. The benchmark index closed above its 14-day moving average on Friday, the first time it traded above that level since January 23. The 2.6% gain for Thursday and Friday marked the S&P 500’s best two-day performance in four months. That rally helped Wall Street recover some ground from the latest slide, which had pushed the benchmark index down as much as 6% from its record closing high set on January 15. Wall Street defines a stock market correction as a drop of at least 10% from the previous high. A bear market is a plunge of 20% from a previous peak. The recent selloff created some severely oversold conditions that have “now blossomed into buy signals, but there is still a much larger intermediate-term bearishness in place,” Larry McMillan, president of McMillan Analysis Corp in Morristown, New Jersey, said in a note to clients. “The buy signals may generate a rally back to and through the 20-day moving average. But for anything more than that, the intermediate-term sell signals have to be reversed.” The S&P 500 fell 3.6% in January, its worst monthly percentage loss since May 2012. Its 20-day moving average is

1,804.25. In another check of the U.S. economy’s health, January retail sales will be in focus. The data could offer more evidence that the economy lost some momentum at the start of the first quarter. On Friday, nonfarm payrolls data showed job creation in the United States slowed sharply over the past two months, raising the prospect that the economy may be losing strength. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen will be in the spotlight this week as she testifies before U.S. lawmakers in her first public comments on monetary policy and the economy after taking the reins at the U.S. central bank. She appears before the House Financial Services Committee on Tuesday and the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday. Yellen, a strong supporter of the Fed’s easy-money policies, will be responsible for ramping down a huge bondbuying program and, later, raising interest rates and shrinking the Fed’s swollen balance sheet. FINAL CHRISTMAS SNAPSHOT The Commerce Department is expected to report on Thursday that retail sales were flat in January, held down by a drop in receipts at auto dealerships, after gaining 0.2% in

December. Even after stripping out autos, retail sales are seen barely rising. “That retail number is actually important because it includes the January gift card numbers, so that completes the Christmas picture,” said Phil Orlando, chief equity market strategist at Federated Investors, in New York. Last week, a group of nine retailers that report comparable monthly sales posted a 3.6% rise for January, below the 4.9% pace a year earlier, according to Thomson Reuters. The data suggested that January was a tough end to the most competitive holiday season for U.S. retailers since the 20072009 recession. This week’s economic calendar includes jobless claims on Thursday and January’s industrial output on Friday. The preliminary February reading on consumer sentiment will also be released on Friday by Thomson Reuters and the University of Michigan. McDonald’s Corp will also report January sales. Last month, the company reported weaker-than-expected quarterly sales at established restaurants as fewer diners frequented the fast-food chain. McDonald’s warned that sales would again fall short of analysts’ expectations in January. On the earnings front, quarterly results will be released this week by Sprint Corp, Cisco Systems Inc, Deere & Co, PepsiCo Inc and MetLife Inc. Of the 343 companies in the S&P 500 that had reported earnings through Friday morning, 67.9% have topped Wall Street’s expectations, slightly above the 67% beat rate for the past four quarters and ahead of the 63% rate since 1994.

Stagnation by design By Joseph E. Stiglitz Soon after the global financial crisis erupted in 2008, I warned that unless the right policies were adopted, Japanese-style malaise – slow growth and near-stagnant incomes for years to come – could set in. While leaders on both sides of the Atlantic claimed that they had learned the lessons of Japan, they promptly proceeded to repeat some of the same mistakes. Now, even a key former United States official, the economist Larry Summers, is warning of secular stagnation. The basic point that I raised a halfdecade ago was that, in a fundamental sense, the US economy was sick even before the crisis: it was only an asset-price bubble, created through lax regulation and low interest rates, that had made the economy seem robust. Beneath the surface, numerous problems were festering: growing inequality; an unmet need for structural reform (moving from a manufacturing-based economy to services and adapting to changing global comparative advantages); persistent global imbalances; and a financial system more attuned to speculating than to making investments that would create jobs, increase productivity, and redeploy surpluses to maximize social returns. Policymakers’ response to the crisis failed to address these issues; worse, it exacerbated some of them and created new ones – and not just in the US. The result has been increased indebtedness in many countries, as the collapse of GDP undermined government revenues. Moreover, underinvestment in both the public and private sector has created a

generation of young people who have spent years idle and increasingly alienated at a point in their lives when they should have been honing their skills and increasing their productivity. On both sides of the Atlantic, GDP is likely to grow considerably faster this year than in 2013. But, before leaders who embraced austerity policies open the champagne and toast themselves, they should examine where we are and consider the near-irreparable damage that these policies have caused. Every downturn eventually comes to an end. The mark of a good policy is that it succeeds in making the downturn shallower and shorter than it otherwise would have been. The mark of the austerity policies that many governments embraced is that they made the downturn far deeper and longer than was necessary, with longlasting consequences. Real (inflation-adjusted) GDP per capita is lower in most of the North Atlantic than it was in 2007; in Greece, the economy has shrunk by an estimated 23%. Germany, the top-performing European country, has recorded miserly 0.7% average annual growth over the last six years. The US economy is still roughly 15% smaller than it would have been had growth continued even on the moderate pre-crisis trajectory. But even these numbers do not tell the full story of how bad things are, because GDP is not a good measure of success. Far more relevant is what is happening to household incomes. Median real income in the US is below its level in 1989, a quartercentury ago; median income for full-time male workers is lower now than it was more than 40 years ago. Some, like the economist Robert Gordon, have suggested that we should adjust to a new reality in which long-term productivity growth will be significantly below what it has been over the past

century. Given economists’ miserable record – reflected in the run-up to the crisis – for even three-year predictions, no one should have much confidence in a crystal ball that forecasts decades into the future. But this much seems clear: unless government policies change, we are in for a long period of disappointment. Markets are not self-correcting. The underlying fundamental problems that I outlined earlier could get worse – and many are. Inequality leads to weak demand; widening inequality weakens demand even more; and, in most countries, including the US, the crisis has only worsened inequality. The trade surpluses of northern Europe have increased, even as China’s have moderated. Most important, markets have never been very good at achieving structural transformations quickly on their own; the transition from agriculture to manufacturing, for example, was anything but smooth; on the contrary, it was accompanied by significant social dislocation and the Great Depression. This time is no different, but in some ways it could be worse: the sectors that should be growing, reflecting the needs and desires of citizens, are services like education and health, which traditionally have been publicly financed, and for good reason. But, rather than government

facilitating the transition, austerity is inhibiting it. Malaise is better than a recession, and a recession is better than a depression. But the difficulties that we are facing now are not the result of the inexorable laws of economics, to which we simply must adjust, as we would to a natural disaster, like an earthquake or tsunami. They are not even a kind of penance that we have to pay for past sins – though, to be sure, the neoliberal policies that have prevailed for the past three decades have much to do with our current predicament. Instead, our current difficulties are the result of flawed policies. There are alternatives. But we will not find them in the self-satisfied complacency of the elites, whose incomes and stock portfolios are once again soaring. Only some people, it seems, must adjust to a permanently lower standard of living. Unfortunately, those people happen to be most people. Joseph E. Stiglitz, a Nobel laureate in economics, is University Professor at Columbia University. His most recent book is The Price of Inequality: How Today’s Divided Society Endangers our Future. © Project Syndicate, 2014.

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HUMAN RESOURCES OFFICER/ Chief of Unit, P4, 31806 Deadline: 14/03/2014, Department of Public Information, NEW YORK, EE/HRMS/c/UN_CUSTOMIZATIONS.UN_JOB_DE TAIL.GBL?Page=UN_JOB_DETAIL&Action=A&J obOpeningId=31806&PostingSeq=1 ECONOMIC AFFAIRS OFFICER, P4, 32154 Deadline: 15/03/2014, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, GENEVA, EE/HRMS/c/UN_CUSTOMIZATIONS.UN_JOB_DE TAIL.GBL?Page=UN_JOB_DETAIL&Action=A&J obOpeningId=32154&PostingSeq=1 INFORMATION SYSTEMS OFFICER (Web Developer), P3, 32163 Deadline: 14/03/2014, Department of Public Information, NEW YORK, EE/HRMS/c/UN_CUSTOMIZATIONS.UN_JOB_DE TAIL.GBL?Page=UN_JOB_DETAIL&Action=A&J obOpeningId=32163&PostingSeq=1 SENIOR PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER,

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P5, 32186 Deadline: 14/03/2014, Department of Public Information, NEW YORK, EE/HRMS/c/UN_CUSTOMIZATIONS.UN_JOB_DE TAIL.GBL?Page=UN_JOB_DETAIL&Action=A&J obOpeningId=32186&PostingSeq=1 SOCIAL AFFAIRS OFFICER, P4, 32252 Deadline: 15/03/2014, Economic Commission for Africa, ADDIS ABABA, EE/HRMS/c/UN_CUSTOMIZATIONS.UN_JOB_DE TAIL.GBL?Page=UN_JOB_DETAIL&Action=A&J obOpeningId=32252&PostingSeq=1 HUMANITARIAN AFFAIRS OFFICER, P3, 32626 Deadline: 14/03/2014, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, NEW YORK, EE/HRMS/c/UN_CUSTOMIZATIONS.UN_JOB_DE TAIL.GBL?Page=UN_JOB_DETAIL&Action=A&J obOpeningId=32626&PostingSeq=1

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Issue No. 1069, February 12 - 18, 2014 (PDF EDITION ONLY) | JOBS | 28

Financial Mirror 2014 02 12 issuu