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The price of rents across Cyprus has become a social scourge

Statement by AKEL MP Aristos Damianou and Chairman of the Parliamentary Internal Affairs Committee after the Committee’s meeting

8 September 2022

The Parliamentary Internal Affairs Committee examined today, through the urgency procedure, the major social issue of high rents, which have made the possibility of renting almost unaffordable in some areas across Cyprus. The problem is particularly acute in Limassol and Nicosia.

The data submitted is damning. For a studio apartment or even a one-bedroom apartment, many times, especially in Limassol, rents can rise up to 1,000 – 1,200 euros. Given the fact that there is no comprehensive government housing policy, given the fact that the role and mission of the Cyprus Land Development Agency has been undermined by political decisions taken, given the fact that, unfortunately, whatever is said, there are ongoing foreclosures of primary homes and family housing, but also due to the increased pressure exerted on households, from the very high inflationary trends, the problem is becoming a major issue. That is why all MP’s have tabled a number of questions. The debate on this issue will continue on 22.09.2022, with the aim of arriving at some conclusions.

The first conclusion that we come to effortlessly is that in the absence of a comprehensive government policy, unfortunately, once again, it is citizens, whether they are young couples, students, or any others who are trying to rent a home/flat, but this isn’t possible.

Asked by a journalist why prices in Cyprus have shot up to Monaco levels, at a time when there are low average wages and what solutions are being promoted to confront the problem, the AKEL MP replied that comprehensive solutions are given by governments – not by the House of Representatives. Furthermore, A.Damianou added that there was a one-sided developmental policy, and in particular the Cyprus Investment Programme has increased the acuteness of the housing problem, also reducing the possibilities for the provision of affordable housing.

As a result, rental prices have increased, supply is lower than demand, which is precisely why the problem is becoming more acute, especially in some provinces such as Limassol and Nicosia. However, the main problem is the lack of a comprehensive government housing policy, with A.Damianou recalling that the then Minister of Interior and subsequent Minister of Finance, Mr. Petrides, had announced that there would be a comprehensive Housing Plan by 2019.

As to another question on homelessness, Aristos Damianou replied that it is not the number that matters, but the fact that in the Republic of Cyprus in 2022, just before 2023, there are homeless people. This is a disgrace for a state with 1 million citizens. We need to address the problem and the relevant services need to demonstrate the necessary sensitivity, because in some cases it is obvious that the necessary attention has not been paid, especially when it comes to the vulnerable groups of the population.


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