The Cyprus statistical service has released data showing that the trade deficit increased during the first half of the current year.

The trade deficit for Cyprus increased by €573.6 million during this time, reaching a figure of €2,657.4 billion in total. The trade deficit stood at €2,083.8 billion during the same period last year.

The import of goods between January and June of this year stood at €3,975.1 billion in total, a 9.6 per cent increase over the €3,625,4 billion figure recorded during the same timeframe in the previous year.

The Giovani Group has refuted any connections to the latest Al Jazeera video linking it with illicit football-related transactions in the United Kingdom.

The hour-long video delves into processes behind the ownership structures and selling of English football clubs.

“The insistence of the Al Jazeera network to present the Giovani Group and its executives as the protagonists of the Cyprus investment programme is questionable, since it has been proven that the Group’s participation in the programme as either provider or a property developer was limited,” the group said in a statement.

“The timing of republishing material that was illegally obtained in 2019 raises questions and leads the public to unsubstantiated conclusions,” the group added.

The Cyprus Consumer Protection Service received more than 8,000 complaints and 320 official reports submitted to formally register complaints, the service has said.

According to the service, 25 per cent of complaints involved the violation of service agreements, the majority of which pertained to abusive clauses, including those found in contracts with Cyprus-based banks.

40 per cent of those complaints involved unfair practices, while 20 per cent involved not honouring or violating warrantees.

In previous contact with the consumer protection service, the Cyprus Mail was told that legislation giving more power to consumers in terms of the warranties they receive will come into effect next year.

However, in other instances, the powers of the service are limited to the provision of advice and guidance relevant to each case.