Our aim is to upgrade Cypriot and European shipping, President says
08:47 - 18 September 2023
Cyprus President Nikos Christodoulides said that he has made a series of proposals to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen with a view, among other things, to upgrading Cypriot shipping in letters he sent the two top UN and EU officials.
The President, who was addressing a dinner hosted in his honour by the Cyprus Shipowners' Association in Athens on 15 September, underlined the importance that his government attaches to the strengthening of the Cypriot register and European shipping.
Stressing that Cyprus has a "strong register of prestige and quality, which continues to rank 3rd in Europe and 11th in the world", President Christodoulides assured that the government prioritises the upgrading of the Cypriot register and European shipping in general.
"A strong Cypriot register strengthens the voice of Cyprus, making it a leading player in the formulation of policies relating to shipping”, he noted, adding that a strengthened Cypriot register will also send a clear message that illegal restrictive measures and violations of international law by Turkey, apart from being unacceptable, are also unproductive.
In this context, he informed that he sent a letter to UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, where he noted that in case the Black Sea Grain Initiative is re-launched, it is important that the UN Secretary General will act accordingly "to ensure equal treatment of all ships involved in the transport of grain in the region and to put an end to Turkey's practice."
President Christodoulides told participants at the dinner that he had also sent a letter to the President of the European Commission, pointing out the need to strengthen European shipping.
"In my letter, I pointed out the importance of shipping for global trade and economy, the huge contribution of the sector to the GDP of the European Union and the fact that shipping in general supports millions of families of European citizens," he stressed.
Speaking about Cyprus' strong register, the President stressed that despite the Turkish invasion and the subsequent economic crisis, Cyprus "has now established itself as one of the most quality and competitive flags in the world, gaining a deserved place on the global maritime map."
"Shipping is a key sector to the development of Cyprus' economy, contributing 7% to the country's GDP, while its contribution to the social and political development of our country is equally important," he said.
"As the new government, I would like to assure you tonight that we remain firmly committed and dedicated to further developing and strengthening the sector and to safeguarding the competitiveness of European shipping," Christodoulides concluded, while praising the Cyprus Shipowners' Association for its long-standing contribution to the development of Cypriot shipping.
President of the Hellenic Republic, Katerina Sakellaropoulou, also addressed the event, stressing the close relationship between Cyprus and Greece with shipping and its importance to the economy and society.
On his part, the President of the Cyprus Shipowners' Association, Andreas Hadjiyiannis, spoke about the achievements and challenges of Cypriot and Greek shipping, as well as European shipping as a whole.