H.E. George Papanastasiou
Minister of Energy,
Commerce and Industry
Mr. Marios Panayides
Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Energy, Commerce, and Industry
The Republic of Cyprus is an island state in the eastern Mediterranean Sea. It is the third largest and populated island in the Mediterranean, with a strategic location at the crossroads of Europe, Africa and Asia. It lies at 35°N and 33°E and it is located southeast of Greece, north of Egypt, northwest of Israel, Palestine and Lebanon, west of Syria and south of Turkey.
The Republic of Cyprus, with an area of 9,251 km², is 240 km from east to west and 100 km from north to south. It has two mountain ranges, the Pentadaktylos range which runs along almost the entire northern coast, and the Troodos massif in the central and south-western parts of the island, which culminates in the peak of Mount Olympus, 1.953 m above sea level. Between the two ranges lies the central plain of Mesaoria. Cyprus has a coastline of 648 km.
Nicosia is the country’s capital and largest city. The official languages are Greek and Turkish. The majority of Greek-Cypriots are Greek Orthodox Christians and the Turkish-Cypriots are predominantly Sunni Muslims. Other denominations are also represented on the island, including Armenians, Maronites and Latin Catholics. In 2008 Cyprus adopted the Euro as its national currency.
The Republic of Cyprus is a sovereign republic with a presidential system of government, founded in 1960. The constitution provides for separate executive, legislative and judicial branches of government with independent powers. The President who is elected for a five-year term by universal vote, is both Head of State and Government. The Council of Ministers appointed by the President, exercises executive power in all matters. The Legislative authority is exercised by the House of Representatives, whose Members are elected by universal vote every five years. The judiciary is established as a separate power independent from the other two branches of the state. On May 01, 2004 the Republic of Cyprus became a full member of the European Union. Accession to the EU was a natural choice for Cyprus, dictated by its culture, civilisation, history, its European outlook and adherence to the ideals of democracy, freedom and justice. As a result of the Turkish invasion of 1974 and the ongoing illegal military occupation of 36% of its territory, Cyprus joined the EU as a de facto divided island. Nevertheless, the whole of Cyprus is EU territory and the implementation of the EU laws and regulations is suspended in the areas which the Government of the Republic of Cyprus does not exercise effective control, pending a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem and the reunification of the island.
Brief on the Economy
The Cyprus economy is dominated by services, which accounted for 82.7% of gross value added in 2019 (including tourism, shipping and tertiary education), while industry accounted for 8%, construction 7% and agriculture, forestry and fishing 2.3%. While tourism remains one of the most significant sectors, especially because of its wider impact on retail, transport, construction and employment, its value-added contribution, when narrowly defined as accommodation, food services, has now been overtaken by professional services, financial services and real estate.
Brief on the Energy Sector
Cyprus applies a National Energy and Climate Plan that defines the national Energy and Climate strategy up to 2030, in line with the relevant EU policies and more particular with the EU’s Green Deal. The national targets as well as the polices and measures set in the Plan aim to increase the share of renewable energy in the national energy mix, to improve the energy efficiency of the economy, as well as, to ensure the security of energy supply and a well-functioning and competitive internal energy market. For implementing the national green energy strategy, EU funds are being fully utilized. Important reforms in the energy sector are being promoted in order to further reduce the greenhouse gas emissions, such as the use of natural gas in electricity production, the establishment of energy interconnections, the liberalization of the electricity market and the use of energy storage.
Land (Sq. km): 9,251 km² and coordinates at 35°N and 33°E Population: The population of the Government controlled area is estimated at 888.000 at the end of 2019, compared to 875.900 at the end of 2018, recording an increase of 1,4%. Time Zone: Time in Cyprus is given by Eastern European Time (EET) (UTC+02:00) or Eastern European Summer Time (EEST) (UTC+03:00) during the summer. GDP (Current Billion US$): The preliminary 2020 Cyprus GDP is $25.1 Billion (€20.8 billion). GDP per capita (Current US$): The preliminary 2020 Cyprus GDP per capita is $28,179 (€23,397). GDP growth: In 2021, Cyprus’s projected real GDP growth rate is 7.1 percent. Proven natural gas reserves: Cyprus has substantial offshore acreage in the Levant Basin, among others, which is estimated by the U.S. Geological Survey to contain about 1.7 billion barrels of oil and 122 Tcf of natural gas. Hydrocarbon exploration in the Cypriot EEZ commenced in 2008 with the granting of the first Exploration Licence. Cyprus’s Aphrodite field in Block 12 contains an estimate of 4,5 Tcf of recoverable natural gas resources, Glaucus discovery in Block 10 represents in place quantities of natural gas of approximately 5 to 8 Tcf, while analysis and interpretation of the data collected from Calypso discovery in Block 6 is ongoing. Developing offshore hydrocarbon resources plays a key role in the government’s economic recovery efforts. Domestic natural gas consumption: It is estimated to be around 0.7-1.0 Bcm annually.