Cyprus is officially in recession, and by the end of June is expected to have asked for a bail-out from the European Union or another loan from Russia. Cypriot banks are hugely exposed to Greek government bonds and the second largest bank, Cyprus Popular, otherwise known as Laiki, has already been promised a large payout from the government to shore up it's finances.
As the government does not have the money to pay Cyprus Popular the entire 1.8 bn already promised, it has been in talks for many weeks with the EU and others over the terms of a possible bail-out. The pay-out will be tiny compared to the 100 bn already set aside to aid beleagured Spanish banks, but our tiny island will add to the growing list of EU countries struggling to make economic ends meet.
I normally try to avoid tales of woe in my newsletters, but as I bank with Laiki, I'm keeping a close eye on things! Watch this space.
Latchi harbour has been undergoing a facelift for some time now with work going on to upgrade the marina facilities and smarten up the harbour area.
Stone walls, new seating areas and landscaping in front of Zouk cafe bar are all in progress together with an overhaul of the parking and boat launch area for private boat owners. Now that most of the restaurants have been modernised with smart stone walls, new umbrellas and fancy seating, the harbour is starting to look positively upmarket and makes a perfect spot to sit down and relax with a coffee or a glass of wine and watch the world go by.
The Xenobia wreck situated just off the coast of Larnaca has been the main attraction for divers from all over the world for many years.
Following the death of a relatively experienced diver in 2010 and an ongoing court case, the Cyprus Ports Authority reacted at the end of last year to try to ban diving on the wreck, fearing liability repercussions as the wreck is situated within port authority waters. All dive companies were informed that they needed a licence to operate, even though no form of licencing system was in place.
Dive companies across the island feared the worst, but have thankfully been able to continue diving the Xenobia wreck after pressure from several groups including the Cyprus Tourism Organisation forced the Ports Authority to withdraw measures for restricting access to the dive area.
After one of the wettest winters on record, we thankfully won't have any water shortage issues - reservoirs are 92% full as I write. BUT, due to heavy rainfall, ALL forms of plantlife have thrived and that means they are bigger and in greater volume that ever before.
As everything dries up in the summer heat, there is a much greater risk of fire across the island, so please take extra care if you are out and about keep your eyes open. Needless to say, if you are a smoker, DON'T throw burning cigarattes stubs out of the window either!And if you spot a fire, call 121.
That's all from my Cyprus Latest News Jun12.
See you next time.