Cyprus Mail

Press and Information Office lacks language skills

Cyprus’ official authority for certified translations, the Press and Information Office (Pio) cannot validate translations carried out in 25 languages out of the 31 it offers, according to a report by the audit service published on Friday.
The department has staff that can speak six languages – Greek, English, French, German, Arabic and Russian – who examine sample translations carried out by associates who are not government employees.
For the remaining 25 languages Pio offers certified translations for, no official can validate their accuracy and are essentially validated by the translators themselves, the report said.
“We consider this a very serious matter,” it outlined, urging that a bill on certified translators must be passed by parliament as soon as possible.
It disengages Pio from certified translators however since the interior ministry was tasked to complete it by 2004, it was approved by the cabinet 10 years later in 2014.
The bill is currently with the legal service which is examining it.
According to the report, the annual budget for Pio must also be prepared more rationally as there are differences between the budget and how much is actually spent.
For instance, the budget for publicity with foreign media outlets was €12,500 in 2016 however only €126 was spent.
In another example, accommodating foreign delegations and journalists as well as the costs of Cypriot journalists travelling abroad as part of government trips had a €75,000 budget last year but actual spending amounted to €36,675.
Pio’s overall budget for 2016 was €788,000 but only €501,670 was spent.

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