The Bank of Cyprus on Thursday announced the introduction of electronic dividend payments, following the European Central Bank’s approval for a cash dividend payout.

Shareholders now have several options to receive their dividends electronically, ensuring a more convenient and efficient process.

Specifically, shareholders of the Cyprus Stock Exchange (CSE) can choose from a number of methods to receive their dividends.

An ‘unprecedented mass claim’ of Laiki and Bank of Cyprus depositors and bondholders amounting to US$600 million was dismissed at the International Arbitral Tribunal of the World Bank, the Legal Service announced on Thursday.

The arbitration named Theodoros Adamakopoulos and others v. Republic of Cyprus (ICSID Case No. ARB/15/49), consisting of 968 natural persons as claimants and six companies.

They are all Greek nationals with the exception of one company incorporated in Luxembourg.

On May 21, the Arbitral Tribunal issued a Decision on Liability where it unanimously dismissed all of the claimants’ claims (with the exception of one) that related to the measures taken in March 2013 during Cyprus’ banking crisis.

The unemployment rate in Cyprus decreased to 6 per cent in the first quarter of 2024, according to a report released on Thursday by the Cyprus Statistical Service (Cystat).

The total workforce now stands at 490,232 individuals, which is 64.5 per cent of the population. This includes 69.0 per cent of males and 60.3 per cent of females, slightly down from 492,230 individuals (65.6 per cent) in the corresponding quarter of 2023.

In terms of employment, there were 460,893 employed individuals, equating to an employment rate of 60.6 per cent—with 64.9 per cent of males and 56.6 per cent of females actively employed.

This marks a modest increase from 458,835 employed individuals (61.2 per cent) in the first quarter of the previous year.

The ongoing tax reform process, the first in over twenty years, was the focal point of a conference organised this week by FMW.

The event saw participation from technocrats from the Ministry of Finance, tax services experts, representatives of political parties, trade unions, and employers’ organisations.

Addressing the conference, Finance Minister Makis Keravnos emphasised that the aim of the tax reform is to create a fairer and simpler system that promotes a more equitable distribution of the tax burden, maintains the sustainability of public finances, and enhances the growth prospects of the economy.

The total assets of investment funds in Cyprus increased by approximately €293 million in March of this year, representing a rise of 4.5 per cent compared to December 2023, reaching €6.78 billion.

According to an announcement by the Central Bank of Cyprus (CBC), which shared the latest investment fund figures this week, “this growth was primarily driven by a rise of around €260 million in investments in stocks and related securities, which totalled €4.93 billion”.

What is more, the central bank explained that the number of investment funds grew from 316 in December 2023 to 328 in March 2024.

Consequently, the total assets of these funds saw a 4.5 per cent increase, climbing to €6.78 billion in March 2024, up from €6.49 billion in December 2023.

The Cyprus Stock Exchange (CSE) ended Thursday, May 23 with profits.

The general Cyprus Stock Market Index was at 163.45 points at 12:53 during the day, reflecting an increase of 0.3 per cent over the previous day of trading.

The FTSE / CySE 20 Index was at 99.38 points, representing a rise of 0.31 per cent.

The total value of transactions came up to €312,712 until the aforementioned time during trading.

In terms of the sub-indexes, the main, alternative, investment firm and hotel indexes rose by 0.37 per cent, 0.34 per cent, 0.2 per cent and 0.48 per cent.

The biggest investment interest was attracted by the Vassiliko Cement Works Public Company (+1.04 per cent), Hellenic Bank (+0.39 per cent), Petrolina (+0.63 per cent), Demetra (+0.2 per cent), and the Bank of Cyprus (+0.22 per cent).