Speech by the Mayor of Lemesos, Mr Andreas Christou on the occasion of the Kuwait event: 16th to 18th June 2007
Ladies and Gentlemen,
We thank you for giving us the opportunity to contact you and the representatives of the Kuwait social and entrepreneurial world. We thank, especially, Mr Argyrou indeed and his tourist agency, which has taken the initiative to organise the visit at your country.
The relations between our countries, that is, between Cyprus and Kuwait, are particularly close and harmonious. Furthermore, they are governed by mutual respect and devotion to universal principles and values. Broadly speaking, I would stress the excellent relations maintained between Cyprus and the whole Arab world.
Over the last 30 years, special relations have been established mainly with our town, Lemesos, which many Kuwaitian friends of ours, reside in, having got possession of immovable property, being on holiday or transforming it into a business centre for their professional activities.
Personal friendly relations have resulted from the above among hundreds of Kuwaitian and Limassolian peoples, as well as their families.
The fact that the air company Jeesera has established further direct flights from and to Cyprus, lasting just a couple of hours and twenty minutes, has particularly been a pleasure for us and we therefore express our great satisfaction indeed. We believe that contacts between our people, as well as mutual visits but also tourist and business transactions will, this way, be facilitated in a fantastic way.
Cyprus and mainly Lemesos have always been a bridge connecting Europe to Asia, Europe to Africa and Europe to the Middle East, with lots of advantages.
However, the accession of Cyprus to the European Union has caused the number of these advantages to sky-rocket and made Lemesos a business and tourist centre on a European and international level.
Our town is the biggest Municipality in Cyprus, which at this very moment experiences an astonishing growth in all the fields. The presence of hundreds of shipping companies has transformed Lemesos into the biggest centre in Europe, dealing with ship management issues and becoming the place where thousands of multinational companies headquarters are.
The works for the construction of the biggest technological park at proximity of our town are starting soon, while on September 1st, the Cyprus Technological University will open its gates in Lemesos, welcoming the first students having enrolled for the coming academic year.
A decision has also been taken to proceed to further expanding and upgrading our towns port by dredging it up to 15 metres, adding a new breakwater of 500 metres and a big passengers room, the total cost of which amounts to 18 millions.
A strategic investor has meanwhile been granted a licence to have a marina for 1.500 vessels constructed within the towns limits. The works are expected to start in 2008.
Also in 2008, the towns old port will be transformed into an attraction becoming a fishermens port for various purposes, including commercial, tourist, recreational and cultural use.
Three golf courses have been granted a licence to be constructed in the western part of Lemesos, with expanded residential areas surrounding them, which will cause the potential investors and individual buyers to be interested in them.
Thousands of European stakeholders, as well as others, choose Lemesos region to have a country or a second house built. The rate of tourist arrivals is still fixed at a high level, while our town comes among the first ten cities in terms of cruise liners coming to port.
The town and the major area of Lemesos have a magnificent tourist infrastructure, with high standard hotels. A big number of international congresses and meetings are over the last years held in Lemesos.
This is why, by the way, we plan to have a conference centre built in Lemesos, as well as a 2.500-seat Fair Centre.
Our town like the whole island of Cyprus offer security and public order living conditions. Besides, an excellent infrastructure in terms of road, telecommunication and air transport network, is also provided.
Clean sea waters are also offered, being awarded the blue flag (which is an international quality accreditation), a friendly and cosmopolitan environment with important and various cultural events taking place throughout the year are also proposed.
Lemesos is a combination of a dynamic and growing city, having a brilliant history of 7.000 years, of which findings can be discovered everywhere around the modern town of Lemesos, in the form of ancient cities and civilisations, ancient theatres and sanctuaries.
We invite you to visit Limassol, expecting you to come soon. It will be a great pleasure for us to be able to offer you our traditional Cyprus hospitality in a modern European town.
We thank you once more.