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Cyprus and Greece seek to upgrade programme through EU funding
2005-09-30 13:08:24

Nicosia, Sep 30 (CNA) -- Cyprus and Greece will submit a comprehensive proposal to the EU with a view to secure EU funds that will allow the extension of the activity of the programme ''Thrace-Aegean-Cyprus'', Greek Minister of the Aegean and Island Policy Aristotelis Pavlides said here today after a meeting with Cypriot Minister of Finance Michael Sarris.

Pavlides noted that there is a potential to extend the programme so that Cyprus and Greece can absorb EU aid through co-sponsoring ''in order to secure the viability of the programme in regions where there are problems.''

Sarris said that the programme would extend to other fields of cooperation, such as trade and maritime shipping, while they will look into ways of using opportunities offered by the EU of which Greece and Cyprus are members.

Speaking later at a press conference, Pavlides said that the governments of Cyprus and Greece decided to reform the 10-year-old programme and upgrade it through EU funding.

He said that both Cypriot President Tassos Papadopoulos and Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis have a similar position, not only for the continuation, but also for the upgrading of the programme and its linking with EU programmes.

Earlier today, Pavlides met with Minister of Foreign Affairs George Iacovou, who expressed certainty that there will be a fresh ''Thrace-Aegean-Cyprus'' programme with possibilities to be funded by the EU.

The ''Thrace-Aegean-Cyprus'' programme aims at promoting the borderland beginning at Thrace and ending in Cyprus, through the projection of the joint culture heritage and tradition, the environment and the modern creations of Hellenism in these regions.

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