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20-06-2022 20:22

Address by the President of the Republic, Mr Nicos Anastasiades, at the reception of the British High Commissioner

Your Royal Highnesses, High Commissioner,


Ladies and Gentlemen,

Allow me to begin by extending a warm welcome to Cyprus, to their Royal Highnesses, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, Prince Edward and  Countess Sophie.

I have no doubt that your visit will be pleasant but most importantly productive, in contributing to further advancing the historic ties of friendship between Cyprus and the United Kingdom. To this end, I look forward to the meeting we will hold tomorrow that will allow us to discuss the broad range of issues that bind our peoples and countries together.

Your Royal Highnesses, Excellencies, High Commissioner,

I am most grateful for your kind invitation to join you in celebration of the Her Majesty’s Queen Elizabeth the Second Platinum Jubilee, following 70 years of her historic reign, dedicated leadership and service to the people of the United Kingdom, the Realms and the Commonwealth.

An event which also provides us with the opportunity to reflect upon the excellent and enduring bonds between our countries, our strong people-to-people contacts and our mutually beneficial and multilateral co-operation on numerous issues of common interest.

Cyprus is particularly proud of our diaspora permanently residing in the UK, constituting the largest Cypriot community overseas, with many Cypriots receiving honours by Her Majesty the Queen for their services in fields such as education, arts, culture, science and business.

At the same time, the UK is one of the most favorite academic destinations to thousands of our students, while Cyprus is home to thousands of Britons and one of the most preferred tourist destinations for hundreds of thousands of tourists from the United Kingdom.

Moreover, it is a well-known fact that our relationship extends far beyond the above-mentioned areas and covers a wide spectrum of policy areas, with our economic, trade, business and investment relationship constituting a fundamental pillar of our partnership.

A partnership which continues to expand as most evident by last month’s historic and groundbreaking agreement that will enable thousands of Cypriots to develop, for the first time, their properties in the British base areas, with multiple benefits to the economy and the society at an especially difficult economic period.

An agreement which concluded the relevant understanding I reached in 2014 with the then Prime Minister David Cameron, as an apt proof of our willingness to establish an even closer, stronger and deeper relationship between our countries.  

On the political and diplomatic fields, our synergies have also been characterized as one of constant evolution, based on various collaborations on a wide range of issues, both bilaterally and multilaterally, including within the EU up until Brexit, but, particularly within the Commonwealth.

And having referred to the Commonwealth, I wish to congratulate the UK for its long-standing leadership and to wish every success at the upcoming meeting of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting at Rwanda, during which I will be represented by the Minister of Foreign Affairs since I will be attending the European Council taking place at the same time.

In closing, I wish to thank once more the High Commissioner for the invitation to join your celebrations and for your warm hospitality.

I kindly ask you all to raise your glasses for a toast to the health and happiness of Her Majesty the Queen and the members of the Royal Family, to the progress and prosperity of the people of the United Kingdom and to the strong friendship between our two countries.