In his opening speech, Finance Minister said: “I am delighted to say that over these years Cyprus has not only been able to make an entry to this promising and dynamic industry but it has actually been able to register a steady and impressive growth.” He described investment funds as an alternative source of funding and noted that in a bid to boost such opportunities, the government has decided to provide seed capital to an alternative investment fund through the 2020 budget with the aim of providing equity financing to SMEs beyond the traditional methods of lending.
Haris Georgiades further mentioned that, apart from a modernised and robust legal framework, another prerequisite for the growth of the industry is a stable safe and sound economic environment. He also highlighted that for the last five years, Cyprus has been one of the fastest growing economies in the European Union (EU) operating with a balanced budget since 2014 and currently has the largest fiscal surplus in the EU “which allows us to maintain macroeconomic stability and promoting tax and other incentives.”
Central Bank Governor Constantinos Herodotou said that the Central Bank is ready to cooperate with other national institutions towards promoting the Investment Funds sector and referring to the current environment, he noted that although there are signs of an economic slowdown in the eurozone due to persistent risk factors such as Brexit and trade tensions, Cyprus has seen a more resilient growth path with a fastest growing outlook than the euro area average.
“Any external shocks to the eurozone will be the same for Cyprus. The difference in numbers means that we have biggest buffers and cushions from a GDP growth perspective. It means we can absorb more without entering in very low growth numbers” he said. CIFA Chairman Angelos Gregoriades, said that we are benefiting from a fully harmonized legal framework and Cypriot investment funds are now listed in major global platforms.
“We have come a long way in a very short time to bring the Cypriot legal framework at par and competitive among other jurisdictions in the EU resulting to a formidable growth with assets under management more than trebling in the past two years,” he said.
Invest Cyprus Deputy Director General Marios Tanousis, said that the Investment Funds sector is of particular interest to foreign investors and one of the most promising in the Cypriot economy.
“The Funds’ sector in Cyprus has not only recorded impressive growth but has without doubt immense potential to become a key economic driver and continue significantly to the country’s growth path,” he said.