The Ministry of Transport said on Tuesday new legislation regulating the use of bicycles is on track to go into force at the end of October and all is being done to facilitate its implementation.
The ministry issued a statement in response to a newspaper report in Phileleftheros under the headline ‘Bicycle law has been shelved’ on Monday.
“In the process of examining the law on bicycle regulation before the transport committee of the House of Representatives it was revealed that various existing laws have similar provisions with a different content and different penalties,” the statement said.
To solve this problem the ministry has taken the necessary steps to amend existing laws.
According to the ministry, a bill amending the extrajudicial offences law has been prepared, which abolishes offences not in compliance with the new law. This was sent to the legal service to be reviewed on July 5.
Preliminary regulations amending the motor vehicles and traffic law have also been sent to the service, on July 3.
“The legislative review of the two laws is expected to be completed in the next few days in order to be submitted to the Council of Ministers for approval, and then submitted to the House of Representatives within the deadline,” the ministry said.
A campaign to promote the bicycle as a means of transport began on September 15 and is expected to last for one year.
The campaign includes the creation and promotion of radio and television spots, the distribution of printed material at a number of events, advertising on buses and the organisation of events.
For the campaign, the ministry has secured a sponsorship of €80,000 from Opap Cyprus and is providing €25,000 from its own funds.
The new law stipulates that bicycles are allowed on any street, bike path or cyclist lane but not on highways except in cases of organised cyclist events which require a permit.
Regulations also forbid cycling under the influence of alcohol or drugs and tests to check the level of alcohol will be carried out.
Cyclists found guilty of violating offences such as the above will be liable for a €1,500 fine or up to a six month prison sentence or both.
Drivers who do not respect the law and persons found to import or distribute bicycles which do not fulfil the necessary requirements may be subject to a €1,000 fine and up to six months in jail.