“Now, that we have entered the times of sanctions, Cyprus, being a full EU member, is still oriented on the improvement of relations with Russia, therefore I think the investment volume will be increasing,” he said.
According to Spiridonov, investments from Cyprus to Russia in 2013 amounted to $22,7 billion, whereas investment from the Russian to the Cyprus economy was $19 billion, “5 of which are direct investments.”
Spiridonov provided an example of one investment project in Russia involving Cyprus and Spanish companies.
“One of our recent investments is in the food retail cluster which we will be created in St. Petersburg together with the Spanish Mercasa,” he stated. The main player in the project, according to Spiridonov, is a Cyprus company which plan to invest about $100 million into this project.
Spiridonov stressed the importance of economic ties between Russia and Cyprus.
He stressed that investment interest in 2014 did not diminish, “even despite the troika ‘haircuts’ introduced in 2013.”
In March 2013 Cyprus agreed to overhaul its banking sector and introduce austerity measures for bondholders and savings account holders with balances over 100,000 euros (some $111,600) in the country’s two biggest banks.
These measures were in trade for a 10-billion-euro bailout from the troika of international creditors, specifically the European Union, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund.