Non-Cypriots took brunt of asset haircut

The Central Bank of Cyprus said on Thursday that the majority of those with deposits in the island’s banks who were affected by the haircut on accounts were foreigners, as losses for Cypriot depositors were far smaller.

Governor Panicos Demetriades stated that enterprises and households in Cyprus were not dealt a serious blow, despite expectations.

Some 96 percent of deposits belonging to Cypriots were not affected by Nicosia’s bailout agreement with the eurozone and the International Monetary Fund.

Demetriades’s comments came during the presentation of the annual report of the island’s central bank. He also stated that “the crisis did not come to Cyprus overnight” and that prospects for the near future remain grim.

Cyprus will keep limits on money transfers and withdrawals until it is more confident that its ailing banks will not face a run, he added, saying that the central bank wants to eliminate these controls as soon as possible, but it has to first make sure that trust in the banks has recovered sufficiently.