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Cyprus’s cabinet prepares surplus-yielding budget

REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs
Nikos Christodoulides, President of Cyprus, addresses the 78th United Nations General Assembly at UN headquarters in New York on September 20, 2023

Cyprus’s cabinet approved its 2024 draft budgetary plan on Wednesday which is expected to yield a surplus of 2.2 percent of national output, authorities said.

Growth was expected to reach 2.9 percent, Cypriot President Nikos Christodoulides said.

The budget, which requires parliamentary approval, is the first prepared by Christodoulides’s centrist administration after winning presidential elections in February.

“With a rate of growth estimated at 2.9 percent and the creation of a surplus, we are fortifying a robust economy which is the best way to promote targetted social policies,” he said in a written statement.

Authorities expect 2023 growth slightly below its forecast 2.8 percent this year, at 2.5 percent.

The island’s primary surplus, which excludes debt interest payments, was forecast to reach 3.6 percent next year from 3.3 percent in 2023.

Cyprus, which required an international bailout in 2013 amid fiscal challenges including exposure to the Greek debt crisis, said it would continue to trim its public debt. By the end of next year, the ratio was expected to fall to 72.9 percent of gross domestic product from a forecast 80.9 percent in 2023.

The cabinet also approved a medium-term plan to reduce public debt to 60 percent of output by 2026, Christodoulides said.

Finance minister Makis Keravnos said no new taxes were expected next year.