Cyprus will invest an estimated 4.4 billion euros (5.38 billion U.S. dollars), or close to 21 percent of its 2020 GDP, under its National Recovery and Resilience plan aimed at helping the economy recover from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, Finance Minister Constantinos Petrides said on Tuesday.
Petrides told CyBC state radio that 3 billion euros are expected to be drawn from the European Union’s Recovery and Resilience Fund (RRF) and the Cohesion Funds, with 1.4 billion euros from private investment or private-public partnerships.
Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades announced that the eastern Mediterranean island’s recovery plan was submitted to the European Commission (EC) on Monday.
EC, confirming that it has received the plan, said that it is structured around five policy areas: Public health and civil protection, economic resilience and competitiveness, the digital transition and the labor market, education and human capital.
EC also said that Cyprus has requested 1 billion euros in grants and 227 million euros in loans under the RRF.
Cyprus’s recovery plan is part of the RRF which provides an investment of 750 billion euros to help the European economy recoup the losses caused by the pandemic and make it resilient to future upheavals.
Petrides said that the plan will lead to the creation of 11,000 new jobs, voicing expectations for the plan to be approved by EC.
“This plan is a good one and is aimed at rendering our economy resilient,” he added.
EC said in its spring projections that the Cypriot economy is expected to expand by 3.1 percent in 2021, after a contraction of 5.1 percent in 2020 due to the coronavirus lockdowns, and by 3.8 percent in 2022.
Petrides said that newer projections by his ministry put Cyprus’ growth in 2021 at about 4.5 percent. (1 euro=1.22 U.S. dollars)