Cyprus will claim the seat of a new community agency or a regional office of an existing organisation in the near future, Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides said on Tuesday.
He was speaking in Luxembourg, where the EU’s 28 Foreign and European Affairs Ministers held an informal debate on the future of the two London-based European organisations (European Medicines Agency and European Banking Authority) following Brexit on the sidelines of the General Affairs Council.
In his intervention in the discussion, Kasoulides reiterated the reasons that effectively excluded Cyprus from claiming the seat of the two organisations, stressing that this procedure should not be a precedent for future decisions on the establishment of new EU organisations.
The minister informed his counterparts that claiming the seat of a new agency or regional office of an existing organisation is an important priority for Cyprus in the near future.
Cyprus, along with 20 other countries, applied last May to host the European Medicines Agency (EMA) which is to be relocated from the UK by 2019 due to Brexit, but was excluded from the race due to the criteria that appear unfavourable to smaller member states.
According to the criteria, the hosting country should be in a position to provide a building with the necessary logistics and sufficient space for offices, meeting rooms and off-site archiving, high-performing telecommunication and data storage networks as well as appropriate physical and IT security standards. Accessibility of the location through the availability, frequency and duration of flight connections from the capitals of all EU member states to the airports close to the location, was also imperative.
Criteria also included the existence of adequate education facilities for the children of agency staff for multi-lingual, European-oriented schooling that can meet the needs for education facilities for the children of the current staff as well as the capacity to also meet future education needs.