Cyprus’ inability to join the group of Schengen countries has adverse effects on its economy, Paphos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (PCCI) chairman George Mais has said.
Speaking to the Cyprus News Agency on Tuesday, Mais said Cyprus has not been faring well when it comes to the issuing of permanent residence permits to property buyers on the island.
“Cyprus is lacking when it comes to this particular aspect when compared to other, more competitive destinations, primarily due to not being able to join the Schengen area,” Mais said, explaining that this results in its permanent residents not being able to travel freely between those 26 countries.
Mais added that Schengen enrolment is the key demand made by people who have recently acquired a residence permit.
The PCCI chairman said that 2022 will be as hard on the economy as this year since the disruption and economic hardship wrought by the pandemic continue to plague the Paphos district in a severe way.
“Special focus needs to be given to development projects funded by the state and it is our duty to work hard to facilitate their implementation without delays,” Mais said.
Asked by the Cyprus News Agency to explain how the economy can be boosted, Mais said that domestic consumers are crucial in this regard, adding they need to be given incentives so that economic activity can be stimulated.
Mais added that talk of redundancies and salary reductions will not help increase economic activity.
“Such things will only increase uncertainty and insecurity for people’s jobs and their incomes, resulting in a decrease in spending which will ultimately hurt the economy,” Mais said.