Cyprus – Member of the European Union
On 1 May 2004 the Republic of Cyprus became a full member of the EU. Accession to the EU was a natural choice for Cyprus, dictated by its culture, civilisation, history, its European outlook and adherence to the ideals of democracy, freedom and justice.
The application of the EU laws and regulations (the acquis communautaire) is suspended in the area under military occupation by Turkey, pending a solution to the forcible division of the country. Meanwhile, the government, in cooperation with the EU Commission, has been promoting arrangements to facilitate increased economic transactions between the two communities and improve the standard of living of Turkish Cypriots, who are also victims of Turkey’s military aggression against Cyprus.
While Cyprus has a lot to benefit from EU membership, it also has a lot to offer as a member state. Strategically situated at the crossroads of Europe, the Middle East, North Africa and Asia, Cyprus is becoming an even more important regional business centre, as well as an international communications and transport hub.
With its modern infrastructure, sound legal system, tax incentives, low crime rate and well educated labour force Cyprus is a favourite regional operations platform for European and other international companies. Since its accession to the EU, Cyprus has undergone significant structural reforms that have transformed its economic landscape. Trade and interest rates have
been liberalised, while price controls and investment restrictions have been lifted. Private financing has been introduced for the construction and operation of major infrastructure projects and monopolies have been abolished.
The new political context created by the accession to the EU is also expected to impact positively on the efforts to reach a comprehensive settlement to the division of Cyprus that will reunite its people and reintegrate its economy.
Cyprus takes over the Presidency of the Council of the European Union from July – December 2012 as part of a "triple-shared presidency" or Trio over an eighteen month period. The countries making up the Presidency Trio in the period from 1 July 2011 to 31 December 2012 are in turn Poland, Denmark and Cyprus.
/Source: Cyprus at a Glance, Published by the Press and Information Office of the Republic of Cyprus, 2011/
For more information about Cyprus in the European Union click here.