Professional Services - Driving jobs and growth in Cyprus

PRESS RELEASE
11 December 2012

 

PwC Cyprus supports the "Professional Services: Driving jobs and growth in Cyprus" report which provides a basis for a constructive dialogue leading to the recovery and growth of the Cypriot economy.

The report was carried out by Ms Fiona Mullen, Director of Sapienta Economics Ltd, and Ms Marina Theodotou, Founder and Managing Director, Curveball Ltd, and was reviewed by Dr. Stavros Zenios, Professor at the Department of Public and Business Administration of the University of Cyprus.

The report was launched by PwC on Tuesday, 11 December 2012 at Hilton Park Hotel in Nicosia, in an event that was attended by industry professionals, private sector representatives and policy makers.  

The report findings demonstrate that the professional services sector has become the main driver of jobs and growth in Cyprus, especially during the economic crisis. During the past five years, international services (professional services and international financial services) grew 40 times faster than tourism and created considerably more jobs.  The research notes that professional services do not compete with other sectors of the economy but rather complement and support their development.

 The report compares Cyprus with its peer group for business services - Ireland, Malta, Luxembourg and Singapore which is the best in class and underscores that Cyprus lags in innovation and market sophistication compared to its peers. It also analyses the weaknesses and strengths, identifying the threats while highlighting the opportunities that the professional services sector can leverage and put into action.

The report concludes with ten, strategic and actionable recommendations for policy makers, the sector and the sector representatives (voice of the industry) that could support economic growth in the next 12 to 24 months without depleting budgetary resources. For the government, key strategic recommendations include consulting the professional services sector on a regular, structured basis and targeting improvement in the global rankings, since foreign investors pay a great deal of attention to these. The private sector is encouraged to be pro-active with respect to the threats identified by the authors, to build capacity in new areas and to foster innovation and technology and empower the youth. Key recommendations for the voice of the industry representatives include tighter coordination among the different players to strengthen its voice, to revamp websites and to leverage technology and social media. The report also includes specific recommendations. For example, the government can use the troika’s recommendation on transferability of staff to create a dedicated double taxation treaty team, while the private sector can help channel private investment into entrepreneurship. According to the authors of the report the adoption of these specific recommendations could lead to the creation of 9,700 new jobs in 5 years, bringing in extra tax and social insurance revenue to the government of €13 million per year.

 It is often said that every crisis also brings opportunities. The report identifies the opportunities not only for the sector of professional services but for the Cypriot economy as a whole.

 Mr Evgenios Evgeniou, CEO of PwC Cyprus, who addressed the event, stressed the importance of this report during a period where Cyprus is about to take crucial decisions for its financial future, and noted that: "This report, through the in depth analysis of the sector, recommends specific actions to generate economic growth in Cyprus and decrease unemployment by creating new jobs. I hope and wish that these recommendations can form the basis for a constructive dialogue between the government and the private sector that would lead to a clear plan of action ".

You can download the "Professional Services: Driving jobs and growth in Cyprus" here

 Notes:

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© 2012 PricewaterhouseCoopers.  All rights reserved.

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