It seems that approval of Cyprus’ revised 2021 budget which is to be put to the vote before parliament on Thursday is almost certain but nothing should be taken for granted.
This is what insiders told Philenews after a meeting on Monday between President Nicos Anastasiades and socialist Edek leader Marinos Sizopoulos whose party’s vote determines the outcome.
Edek is one step closer to casting a positive vote since almost all of its demands have been granted. But a new obstacle arose after the one-seat Solidarity party which voted in favour now has cast doubt.
“If on Thursday Edek’s three votes are cast in favour but Eleni Theocharou’s turns negative then the revised budget will again be rejected and the prevailing economic instability will continue,” one said.
The first bill was rejected in December after opposition Diko voted against it because the government refused to allow the Auditor-General to probe the island’s controversial and now banned citizenship for investment programme.
Diko had been voting for state budgets throughout the current administration’s term despite disagreement on other issues.
The government and ruling Disy are now counting on Edek’s three votes to pass the bill. Edek’s demands, some being difficult to grant since they relate to sensitive banking issues, are expected to be granted to a satisfactory degree.
Edek MPs insist that more rights should be given to borrowers facing foreclosure including the right to buy their defaulted loan at 50% to 55% of its value before it gets auctioned.
Also present at Monday’s crucial meeting at the presidential palace was ruling Disy leader Averof Neophytou.