An additional four citizen service centres will open by January 2018 in Kolossi, Latsia, Limassol and Larnaca, while another one is scheduled to open in Paphos later in 2018, head of the centres Maria Alexandrou said on Wednesday.
Eleven years after the operation of the first centre in Nicosia, the institution has evolved significantly in a variety of ways. The network was extended to operate two more centres in the Nicosia district, one each in Limassol, Larnaca, Paphos and the Famagusta region, as well as in Polis Chrysochous and Pelendri.
In addition, the department of road transport is running four centres in post offices which offer similar services.
At present the eight centres which operate under the finance ministry’s administration and personnel department provide 3,300 services every day, while the 160 employees also answer 1,100 phone calls daily, Alexandrou explained. The bureaus offer a wide range of services to give the public to complete administrative tasks without having the inconvenience of going to several departments or ministries.
The results of a survey published this week show that 72.9 per cent of the population use the offices for registering and migration issues, 57.7 per cent for health matters and 51.4 per cent for road transport issues.
While 90 per cent choose to visit the offices in person, 7.4 per cent use the phone to contact them while a mere 0.1 per cent fax or email.
For the majority of visitors (50.8 per cent) the waiting time is between 10 and 30 minutes with 33.3 per cent waiting under 10 minutes, and 1.5 per cent more than an hour.
According to the study, most people, 62.2 per cent, only have to visit a bureau once for a service, 24.3 per cent twice and 4 per cent three times.
The number of visits also depends on the type of request, the study found. For example, to get a passport it is necessary to make two visits, one to submit the application documents and one to pick up the passport.
An encouraging 85.5 per cent of visitors stated they are satisfied with the location of the office they used.
The centres have also improved their approval ratings. While in 2014 80.4 per cent of visitors said they were satisfied with them, in 2017 92.4 per cent voiced their satisfaction.
The service centres are open Monday to Friday from 8am to 5pm.