Cyprus Mail

Water sports operators close in protest

Some 70 water sports operators across Cyprus will be closed on Wednesday to protest against tender specifications for operating water sports in Ayia Napa.

In a statement on Tuesday, small shopkeepers union POVEK along with the Water Sports Association said two meetings they held with the Ayia Napa mayor Yiannis Karousos in the past two weeks “were futile.”

They have been protesting outside the Ayia Napa town hall since Tuesday.

This is because Karousos has held firm on tender specifications for the water sports tender.

The mayor has adhered to a request by Interior Minister Socrates Hasikos last year who called on local municipalities to specify bidders should have three years of experience in water sports from anywhere across the EU.

This would mean sidelining parliament approved regulations passed in 2014 that clash with EU directives and require five years of experience in the same area they are bidding for, meaning only those already operating in an area can bid for it.

“As of tomorrow (Wednesday) we escalate measures, shutting down some 70 water sports centres nationwide while on all beaches leaflets are being distributed. We repeat our steadfast stance in implementing the current legislation and the 2014 regulations, not anyone’s interpretation,” their statement said.

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