WHILE the bills were being discussed at yesterday’s House Legal Affairs Committee, organisations such as the Chamber of Commerce (KEVE), the Cyprus Land Developers Association, the Technical Chamber ETEK and the banks said they had not been consulted fully before the legal amendments were prepared, contradicting Interior Minister Neoclis Sylikiotis who said most of the issues had been agreed before they were drawn up.
“We feel the specific bills were prepared without reaching an agreement with concerned organisations such as the Cyprus Bar Association and KEVE, who are directly involved and categorically disagree with the bills,” said DIKO deputy Nicolas Papadopoulos. “If these bills were part of the government’s measures to deal with the public deficit, why wasn’t the correct procedure followed so that most issues were agreed on?”
Papadopoulos said this lack of coordination would lead to new delays in amending the law, which currently leaves property owners – local and foreign – exposed, as there are vast difficulties in acquiring Title Deeds.
This is mainly due to debts owed by developers to banks, which then refuse to approve the Deeds.
Committee Chairman lonas Nicolaou of DISY agreed. “Through our discussion today, it became clear that a consultation that started months ago on this matter has not been exhausted,” he said. “We noted completely opposing views, which could have reached a conclusion if the correct consultations had taken place.”
He said the committee has asked the government to meet with those involved and sort out the matter.
AKEL deputy Yiannakis Thoma said the issue was massive and complex, and involved many personal interests.
“There is a chance for thousands of people who are being held hostage to developers to get Title Deeds,” said Thoma. “Many families and foreigners are facing serious problems, which is why controlled efforts are being made to improve the situation. We feel with goodwill and cooperation we will achieve our aim of securing Title Deeds and increasing state income.”