Days before leaving office, President Nicos Anastasiades on Tuesday thanked employers organisations for their ‘close cooperation’ over the last 10 years, and urged them to continue working closely with his successor.

The outgoing president made the remarks during a lunch hosted in his honour by the Employers and Industrialists Federation (OEV). A day earlier, he had attended a similar function hosted by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

“We faced down crises thanks to our close collaboration, and successfully to the benefit of all, and not just the employers as it is being said – but rather to the benefit of employees, the self-employed, businesses and so forth,” Anastasiades said.

Despite these crises – the 2013 financial meltdown, the coronavirus situation, and the fallout of the Ukraine war – Cyprus now boasts a 6.8 per cent growth rate.

“We are also attracting IT multinationals to set up their HQs here, we’ve succeeded in replacing the damage as a result of the sanctions in tourism services, and more generally we have created prospects through the ‘Cyprus Tomorrow’ programme for a secure future trajectory.”

Anastasiades then encouraged OEV to work with the new president just as they had worked with him.

Addressing the outgoing president, OEV head Antonis Antoniou likewise conveyed his appreciation.

“Under your watch you had to deal with the worst and biggest crises in this country after the [1974] coup and invasion, and you handled these successfully.”

Antoniou wished Anastasiades good health and all the best in his future endeavours.

“We are certain that your knowledge and experience will be made use of by the state, and I have no doubt that you will gladly offer them if called upon.”

The president was presented with a honourary plaque in recognition of his ‘invaluable service’.