03 Dec SHIPPING: Efforts to upgrade Cyprus maritime cluster is paying off
Efforts to upgrade the Cyprus Maritime Cluster and the island’s shipping sector are their first positive results, Deputy Minister for Shipping Natasa Pilides told parliament.
Speaking to the House Committee of Finance, which discussed the Ministry’s 2019 budget, Pilides said since the creation of the shipping Ministry (last year), companies registered under the tonnage tax system increased from 168 to 191, “marking a large percentage rise.”
The Central Bank of Cyprus’ ship management survey shows that the sector has recorded its largest increase since 2013, which is creating more jobs.
Data submitted to the Committee shows that ship management’s contribution to the economy amounted to €506 mln or 5.1% of GDP which is the highest since 2013.
Pilides said that a total of 1,100 ocean-going ships operate under the Cypriot flag and around 700 smaller vessels with total tonnage of 24 million.
She said her Ministry undertook to streamline procedures and modernise legislation so that Cyprus as registry and maritime cluster could become more competitive.
The Ministry’s 2019 budget for 2019 is up 21.7% to EUR 9.87 mln from EUR 8.11 mln in 2018.
The increase of EUR 1.7 mln, is mainly due to development expenditure earmarked for promotional activities and development for merchant shipping.
The Ministry’s revenue for 2018 amount to EUR 13 mln.