New Delhi: Keen to further boost bilateral ties with India under Narendra Modi-led government, Cyprus is looking to bolster tourism activities as well as make the island nation a shooting destination for Indian film makers.
Cyprus, the seventh largest source of FDI into the country, is also pinning hopes on the new Indian regime to sort out tax issues which has created “immense obstacles” for investment activities between the two sides.
Striking an optimistic note, a Cyprus Foreign Ministry spokesperson said that a visit to India by the country's President Nicos Anastasiades would help in creating a new atmosphere.
Emphasising that Cyprus and India have traditionally had close ties, the official said the island nation was looking forward to the new government in New Delhi so that bilateral ties can be further enhanced and strengthened.
“The areas of trade, investments and commerce remain of primary importance, while at the same time we are looking to boost tourism in both directions. “In addition, Cyprus being a ‘natural studio' is trying to establish itself as a shooting destination for Indian film productions, which in itself will enhance tourism and cultural relations,” the spokesperson told PTI.
Many Indian films have been shot in Cyprus, known for its scenic beaches and natural beauty. “... a visit by the President of the Republic of Cyprus, Nicos Anastasiades, to India, can do a lot to create a new atmosphere, which will be conducive in the promotion of our relations and the opening of new areas and avenues of fruitful co-operation,” the spokesperson said.
India received Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) worth USD 557 million from Cyprus in the 2013-14 period, according to latest official figures. The same stood at US $ 490 million during the 2012-13 financial year.
However, late last year Indian government had put the investments coming from Cyprus under tax lens, a move which the island nation said was creating immense obstacles for investment activities between them. The move was a part of efforts to curb possible tax evasion by entities through Cyprus. Discussions have taken place between the two sides on the issues while Cyprus expects to sort out the matter by closely co-operating with the new Indian government. Narendra Modi is to set oath as Prime Minister on May 26.