Monday, May 13, 2013

Travels in Cyprus

I recently returned from Cyprus, where the banking crisis continues. While people have been hurt by having their bank accounts raided, businesses, schools, hospitals have been hurt even more. Driving in Cyprus, around 20-25% of shops are shuttered, many probably permanently. Yet, if the purpose was to eliminate Russian money laundering through Cyprus, I still saw 747s from Russia arriving at Paphos's tiny airport.

I also spent some time in Turkish occupied North Cyprus, which only Turkey recognizes (and subsidizes). Long poorer than the rest of Cyprus, it shows signs of pulling ahead. Cars are newer, commercial and residential development is moving fast. My forecast is that in ten years, the North will be wealthier and more separate from the South. Whereas in the South, virtually everyone speaks excellent English, in the North few and fewer do.

More to come!

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