Cyprus president asks people to accept need for sacrifices

In his last New Year’s message as president of the Republic of Cyprus, outgoing Dimitris Christofias told the public that they will have to make sacrifices in order to avoid the worst, while expressing confidence that the Cypriot economy can be saved by creating the conditions that will set it back on a path to growth in a short period of time.

Christofias said the consequences of the global economic crisis and particularly the exposure of Cypriot banks to Greek state bonds and the Greek economy in general have created a serious fiscal gap that has forced the government in Nicosia to resort to the European Stability Mechanism.

He reiterated that the government has managed to safeguard a number of privileges for its citizens in the context of the tough negotiations with its prospective creditors, and went on to place most of the blame for the crisis in the local credit system on the Central Bank of Cyprus and its former governor.