The phenomenon of ‘brain drain’ may not be as dire in Cyprus as in other countries but it is concerning, according to House speaker Annita Demetriou.

Speaking at the University of Cyprus (UCy) graduation event, on Tuesday evening, at the department of positive and applied sciences, Demetriou assured the state would do everything possible so that “every citizen experiences rule of law, security and meritocracy, and wholeheartedly wants to stay and contribute to the country.”

Parliament is deeply aware of its legislative responsibility and of the state’s key role in reducing unemployment, safeguarding jobs, and creating new ones, the House speaker said.

“The disaffection of young people, especially towards politics and politicians, increases the difficulty of our mission but makes it all the more necessary. We want [the young] to have confidence [in the country]. We need you because you are the driving force […] towards the future,” Demetriou told graduates.

Participation of young people in government and having their voice in decision-making centres is important, she added.

Demetriou called on graduates to “honour the privilege of technology but observe moderation” as, she said, “we are facing a massive multi-layered change. Artificial intelligence, social media, the spread of fake news, disinformation, conspiracy, racism, xenophobia, the rise of extremist movements in the heart of Europe [and] climate change now define the way we live.”