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The options for Cyprus

Cyprus achieves an EU loan of all or nearly all the 5.8 billion euros targeted by the bank levy that has been rejected by parliament, remains in the EU and begins the painful process of recovery.

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Cyprus achieves an EU loan of all or nearly all the 5.8 billion euros targeted by the bank levy that has been rejected by parliament, remains in the EU and begins the painful process of recovery.

The government returns to the idea of a one-off levy on bank deposits of more than euros 100,000, with accounts holding less than that being protected. This would raise an estimated 2 billion euros, but such an action has already proved fiercely unpopular.

The pension funds of three state utilities hand over about 4 billion euros of their reserves to act as collateral on an EU bail-out, while Cyprus would ask Russia for the other 2 billion euros.

Cyprus leaves the euro and returns to the Cypriot pound. Abandoning the single currency may appeal to the national pride of some, but the effects on the economy and on savings would probably be calamitous.

In return for lending 5 billion euros, Russia demands gas exploration rights and/or a naval base on the island, which would compensate for the probable loss of Tartus if and when the Syrian regime falls.

Archbishop Chrysostomos II, the head of the Orthodox Church in Cyprus, suggested mortgaging Church assets so the state could issue sovereign bonds. Carrying out a proper valuation in time is not regarded as feasible.

 

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