|Address by the President of the Republic of Cyprus,
Mr Nicos Anastasiades, at the Windsor Silver Anniversary
It is with great pleasure that I have accepted your invitation to join you in celebrating Windsor’s Silver Anniversary, its 25th year anniversary since it was first established.
This anniversary is very unique to me since I have the privilege of being a personal friend with the founder of Windsor, Mr Nicolas Abuitah, as well as his family, for over 30 years. I consider this to be a privilege since Mr Abuitah’s family is a true and genuine friend of Cyprus and has a long-standing valuable contribution both at a societal and an economic level.
At the same time, our friendship extended to the professional field, since I had the honour to be the lawyer of Windsor when back in 1988 it established a financial services firm in Cyprus. I consider this to be an honour since Windsor was the first ever company to establish a financial services firm in Cyprus.
The Abuaitahs were the first to realize the dynamics of the financial services industry in Cyprus and the competitive advantages Cyprus offered to foreign investors; such as, its diversified open-market economy, its highly-educated workforce, its strategic location at the crossroads of the three continents of Europe, Asia and Africa, its well-developed infrastructure and its favourable tax regime.
Still today, even after so many years, Cyprus retains unique characteristics of expertise and advantages in the service industry, which, in addition to the above-mentioned attributes, have been enhanced by its EU membership, its fully internationally harmonized tax and legal system, the conclusion of almost 50 double tax treaties and its most competitive corporate tax rate at 12.5%.
With this opportunity, I would like to stress that at the heart of the Government's strategy for economic recovery during the current economic challenges that Cyprus is facing, is the pursuance of Foreign Direct Investment. To this end, all steps are being taken to ensure that a more effective and business-friendly environment is facilitated.
In this respect, I am pleased to note that a thousand new companies were actually registered in Cyprus in November, reinforcing the expectations of stakeholders in the international services sector that the situation is improving and that Cyprus is capable of addressing its current challenges as thoroughly, as effectively and as promptly as possible.
You need to have plenty of passion and ambition to set up a business. You also need to have the energy, dynamism and determination to succeed. The Abuaitah’s certainly had all this and more. Through Windsor’s evolution, they have proven that they can succeed and overcome any obstacles and challenges along the way.
From being the pioneers who have established the first financial services firm on the island, to raising the bar for the investment firms in Cyprus and enticing many others to follow suit and to introducing innovations that have driven transformations across the financial services industry in Cyprus.
Indeed, from what we have also seen from the video clips tonight, Windsor’s growth and impact on the financial industry in Cyprus has exceeded expectations. I am truly impressed with Windsor Brokers' evolution and how a foreign company has grown steadily over the past 25 years to become a successful international firm based in Cyprus. I have no doubt that the next 25 years to follow will be marked by even greater success and growth.
While we reflect upon Windsor’s many achievements and milestones, I am sure that these could not have been made possible without Windsor’s loyal and committed workforce. The Windsor team members are indeed very lucky to be part of this family and to be following its strong principles and moral values.
Most importantly, Windsor is renowned and recognized for its ethics and integrity.
Before concluding, I would like to praise Windsor’s long-standing tireless efforts, hard work and contribution to our collective efforts for economic growth, through, amongst others, promoting Cyprus as a highly-competitive destination for foreign investors and attracting international business interests.
We greatly appreciate and value your support and I have no doubt that we will deepen even further our on-going and mutually reinforcing cooperation, for the future prosperity of Cyprus, its economy and its people.
Concluding, I thank you once again for inviting me to this event and I wish to you all health, happiness and prosperity.