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Cyprus

Economic reform needed to win market confidence

Finance Minister Harris Georgiades said on Wednesday there had been no final decision on the matter and that it was just a scenario tabled for consultation.

Cyprus will win back market confidence if it continues its efforts to reform and consolidate the economy, Finance Minister Harris Georgiades said on Thursday.

Georgiades said the government’s aim was to rise to investment grade, following successive downgrades during the previous administration, which send the island’s sovereign into ‘junk’ territory.

“Today, after a series of upgrades, we are two notches from investment grade,” he said, speaking on the sidelines of an insurance conference.

The minister pledged to continue efforts, adding that Cyprus appeared to be on the right path.

“We must continue the effort, we must send the message through our actions that the objective of reform and consolidation of the Cypriot economy has not been terminated with the conclusion of the bailout agreement,” Georgiades said.

Reaching investment grade would cut the cost of borrowing further, he said.

“Consequently, it is an important target, beyond the indirect benefits a further upgrade would bring.”

The minister said he could not tell when ratings agencies would be upgrading Cyprus.

“How and under what conditions is crystal clear,” he said. “Continuing the prudent management of public finances, continuing to support the recovery of our economy, the course of consolidating the banking sector, and the continued push for reforms and changes, that our economy needs.”

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